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Acts 8:26-39

ኮትኳች


Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 215

PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2005 6:19 am    Post subject: ክፍል ስድስት Reply with quote

ማስታወሻ ለዲጎኔ
እጅጉን በጣም እንደምትወደው የመሰከርክለትን የማርቲን ሉተርን መጽሐፍ በተከታታይ ማውጣቱን ቀጥለናል :: በከፍተኛ ተመስጦና ፍቅር እያነበብከው ነው ብለን እንገምታለን :: መልካሙን ሁሉ እንመኝልሃለን ::

ካለፈው የቀጠለ
On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543
Part 6


However, some among us may wonder how it is possible that at the time of Jeremiah and then up to the advent of the Messiah the seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob existed and remained under the tribe of Judah or the throne of David, even though only Judah remained whereas Israel was exiled. These persons must be informed that the kingdom of Israel was led into captivity and destroyed, that it never returned home and never will return home, but that Israel, or the seed of Israel, always continued to a certain extent under Judah, and that it was exiled with Judah and returned again with her. You may read about this in I Samuel, I Kings 10 [11] and 12, and II Chronicles 30 and 31. Here you will learn that the entire tribe of Benjamin thus a good part of Israel remained with Judah, as well as the whole tribe of Levi together with many members of the tribes of Ephraim, Manasseh, Asher, Isachar, and Zebulun who remained in the country after the destruction of the kingdom of Israel and who held to Hezekiah in Jerusalem and helped to purge the land of Israel of idols. Furthermore, many Israelites dwelt in the cities of Judah.
Since we find so many Israelites living under the rule of the son of David, Teremiah is not lying when he says that Levites and the seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob will be found under the rule of David's house. All of these, or at least a number of them, were taken to Babylon and returned from it with Judah, as Ezra enumerates and recounts. Undoubtedly many more returned of those who were led away under Sennacherib, since the Assyrian or Median kingdom was brought under the Persian rule through Cyrus, so that Judah and Israel were very likely able to join and return together from Babylon to Jerusalem and the land of Canaan. For I know for certain that we find these words in Ezra 2:70: "And all Israel (or all who were there from Israel) lived in their towns." And how could they live there if they had not come back? In the days of Herod and of the Messiah the land was again full of Israelites; for in the seventy weeks of Daniel, that is, in four hundred and ninety years, they had assembled again. However, they did not again establish a kingdom.

Therefore the present-day Jews are very ignorant teachers and indolent pupils of Scripture when they allege that Israel has not yet returned, as though all of Israel would have to return. Actually not all of Judah returned either, but only a small number, as we gather from Ezra's enumeration. The majority of them remained in Babylon, as did Daniel, Nehemiah, and Mordecai themselves. Similarly, the majority of the Israelites remained in Media, though they perhaps traveled to Jerusalem for the high festivals and then returned to their homes again, as Luke writes in the Acts of the Apostles [2:5 ff.]. God never promised that the kingdom or scepter of Israel would be restored like that of Judah. But he did promise this to Judah. The latter had to recover it by virtue of God's promise that he would establish David's house and throne forever and not let it die out. For as Jeremiah declares here, God will not tolerate that anyone slander him by saying that he had rejected Judah and Israel entirely, so that they should no longer be his people and that David's throne should come to an end, as if he had forgotten his promise, when he had promised and pledged to David an eternal house. Even though they would now have to sojourn in Babylon for a little while, still, he says, it will remain an eternal house and kingdom.

I am saying this to honor and to strengthen our faith and to shame the hardened unbelief of the blinded and stubborn Jews, for whom God must ever and eternally be a liar, as though he had let David's house die out and forgotten his covenant and his oath sworn to David. For if they would admit that God is truthful, they would have to confess that the Messiah came fifteen hundred years ago, so that David's house and throne should not be desolate for so long, as they suppose, just because Jerusalem has lain in ashes and has been devoid of David's throne and house so long. For if God kept his promise from the time of David to the Babylonian captivity and from then to the days of Herod when the scepter departed, he must also have kept it subsequently and forever after, or else David's house is not an eternal but a perishable house, which has ceased together with the scepter at the time of Herod.

But as we have already said, God will not tolerate this. No, David's house will be everlasting, like "day and night and the ordinances of heaven and earth," as Jeremiah puts it [Jer. 33:25]. However, since the scepter of Judah was lost at the time of Herod, it cannot be eternal unless the son of David, the Messiah, has come, seated himself on David's throne, and become the Lord of the world. If the Jews are correct, then David's house must have been extinct for 1568 years, contrary to God's promise and oath. This it is impossible to believe. Now this is a thorough exposition of the matter, and no Jew can adduce anything to refute it. Outwardly he may pretend that he does not believe it, but his heart and his conscience are devoid of anything to contradict it.

And how could God have maintained the honor of his divine truthfulness, having promised David an eternal house and throne, if he then let it stand desolate longer than intact? Let us figure this out. In the opinion of the Jews, the time from David to Herod covers not quite a thousand years. David's house or throne stood for that length of time, inclusive of the seventy years spent in Babylon. (We would add over one hundred years to this total.) From Herod's time, or rather let us say for this is not far from correct from the destruction of Jerusalem, to the year 1542 there are 1,568 years, as stated above. According to this computation, David's house and throne has been empty four or five hundred years longer than it was occupied. Now inquire of stone and log whether such may be called an eternal house, especially constructed by God and preserved by his sublime faithfulness and truthfulness -- a house that stands for one thousand years and lies in ashes for fourteen or fifteen hundred years!

Though the Jews be as hard or harder than a diamond, the lightning and thunder of such clear and manifest truth should smash, or at least soften, them. But as I said before, our faith is cheered thereby, it is strengthened, it is made sure and certain that we do have the true Messiah, who surely came and appeared at the time when Herod took away the scepter of Judah and the saphra, so that David's house might be eternal and forever have a son upon his throne, as God said and swore to him and made a covenant with him.

Some crafty Jew might try to cast up to me my book against the Sabbatarians, in which I demonstrated that the word "eternally," le-olam, often means not really an eternity, but merely "a long time." Thus Moses says in Exodus 21:6 that the master shall take the slave who wants to stay with him and bore through his ear with an awl on the door, "and he shall serve him eternally." Here the word designates a human eternity, that is, a lifetime. But I also said in the same treatise that when God uses the word "eternal," it is a truly divine eternity. And he commonly adds another phrase to the effect that it shall not be otherwise, as in Psalm 110:4, "The Lord has sworn and will not change his mind." Similarly in Psalm 132:11: "The Lord swore to David a sure oath from which he will not turn back," etc. Wherever such a "not" is added, this means surely eternal and not otherwise. Thus we read in Isaiah 9:7, "Of peace there will be no end." And in Daniel 7:14, "His dominion is an everlasting dominion... and his kingdom one that shall not be destroyed." This is eternal not before men, who do not live eternally, but before God, who lives eternally.

The promise states that David's house and throne shall be eternal before God. He says: "Before me, before me," a son shall forever sit upon your throne. In Psalm 89:35-37 he also adds the little word "not": "Once for all I have sworn by my holiness, I will not lie to David. His line shall endure for ever, his throne as long as the sun before me. Like the moon it shall be established for ever; it shall stand firm while the skies endure." The last words of David convey the same thought: "He has made with me an everlasting covenant, ordered in all things and secure." These words "ordered and secure" mean the same as firm, sure, eternal, never-failing. The same applies to the saying of Jacob in Genesis 49:10: "The scepter shall not depart." "Not depart" signifies eternally, until the Messiah comes; and that surely means eternally. For all the prophets assign to the Messiah an eternal kingdom, a kingdom without end.

But if we assume that this refers to a human or temporal eternity or an indefinite period of time (which is impossible), then the meaning would necessarily be as follows: Your house shall be eternal before me, that is, your house shall stand as long as it stands, or for your lifetime. This would pledge and promise David the equivalent of exactly nothing; for even in the absence of such an oath David's house would stand "eternally," that is, as long as it stands, or as long as he lives. But let us dismiss such nonsense from our minds, which would occur to none but a blinded rabbi. When Scripture glories in the fact that God did not want to destroy Judah because of the sins committed under Rehoboam, but that a lamp should remain to David, as God has promised him regarding his house (II Kings 8:19), it shows that all understood the word "eternal" in its true sense.

Someone might also cite here the instance of the Maccabees. After Antiochus the Noble had ruthlessly ravaged the people and the country, so that the princes of the house of David became extinct, the Maccabees ruled, who were not of the house of David but of the tribe of the priests, which meant that the scepter had departed from Judah and that a son of David did not sit eternally on the throne of David. Thus the eternal house of David could not be really eternal. We reply: The Jews cannot disturb us with this argument, and we need not answer them; for none of this is found in Scripture, because Malachi is the last prophet and Nehemiah the last historian, who, as we can gather from his book, lived until the time of Alexander. Therefore both parties must rely, so far as this question is concerned, on Jeremiah's statement that a son of David was to occupy his throne or rule forever. For apart from Scripture, whoever wants to concern himself with this may regard it as an open question whether the Maccabees themselves ruled or whether they served the rulers. As to the reliability of the historians, we shall have some comments later on.

It seems to me, however, that the following incident recorded in Scripture should not be treated lightly. At the time of Queen Athaliah, for fully six years no son of David occupied his throne; she, Athaliah the tyrant, reigned alone. She had had all the male descendants of David slain, with the single exception of Joash, an infant a quarter or a half year old, who had been secretly removed, hidden in the temple, and reared by the excellent Jehosheba, the wife of the high priest Jehoiada, daughter of King Joram and sister of King Ahaziah, whom Jehu slew. Here the eternal covenant of God made with David was in great peril indeed, resting on one young lad in hiding, who was far from occupying the throne of David. At this time his house resembled a dark lantern in which the light is extinguished, since a foreign queen, a Gentile from Sidon, was sitting and reigning on David's throne. However, she burned her backside thoroughly on that throne!

Still, all of this did not mean that the scepter had departed or that God's eternal covenant was broken. For even if the light of David was not shining brightly at this time, it was still glimmering in that child Joash, who would again shine brightly in the future and rule. He was already born as a son of David, and these six years were nothing but a tentatio, a temptation. God often gives the appearance that he is unmindful of his word and is failing us. This he did with Abraham when he commanded him to burn to ashes his dear son Isaac, in whom, after all, God's promise of the eternal seed was embodied. Likewise when he led the children of Israel from Egypt. In fact, he seemed to be leading them into death, with the sea before them, high cliffs on both sides, and the enemy at their back blocking their way of escape. But matters proceeded according to God's word and promises; the sea had to open, move, and make way for them. If the sea had not done this, then the cliffs would have had to split asunder and make a path for them, and they would have squeezed and squashed Pharaoh between them, just as the sea drowned the foe. For all creatures would rather have to perish a thousand thousand times than that God's word should fail and deceive, however strange things may appear. Thus Joash is king through and in God's word, and occupies the throne of David before God although he still lies in the cradle, yes, even if he lay dead and buried under the ground; for in spite of all he would have to rise, like Isaac, from the ashes.

In such a manner we might also account for that story of the Maccabees; but this is unnecessary, for it has an entirely different meaning. The Babylonian captivity might be viewed similarly; however, thanks to splendid prophets and miracles, the situation at that time was much brighter. But Joash posed a terrible temptation for the house of David, against the covenant and the oath of God, although the house and rule of David still flourished; it was only the ruler, or the head, that was suffering and that faltered in God's covenant. But this is the manner of his divine grace, that he sometimes plays and jokes with his own. He hides himself and disguises himself so that he may test us to see whether we will remain firm in faith and love toward him, just as a father sometimes does with his children. Such jesting of our heavenly Father pains us immeasurably, since we do not understand it. However, this is out of place here.

We have been speaking about a statement of Jeremiah. We will now turn our attention to one of the last prophets. In Haggai 2:6-9 we read: "For thus says the Lord of hosts: once again, in a little while, I will shake the heavens and the earth and the sea and the dry land; and I will shake all nations, so that the consolation of the Gentiles (chemdath) shall come, and I will fill this house with splendor, says the Lord of hosts. The silver is mine, and the gold is mine, says the Lord of hosts. The splendor of this latter house shall be greater than the former, says the Lord of hosts; and in this place I will give prosperity, says the Lord of hosts."

This is another of those passages which pains the Jews intensely. They test it, twist it, interpret and distort almost every word, just as they do the statement of Jacob in Genesis 49. But it does not help them. Their conscience pales before this passage; it senses that their glosses are null and void. Lyra does well when he plies them hard with the phrase adhuc modicum, "in a little while." They cannot elude him, as we shall see. "In a little while," he says, cannot possibly mean a long period of time. Lyra is surely right here; no one can deny it, not even a Jew, try as hard as he may. In a little while, he says, the Consolation of the Gentiles will come, after this temple is built -- that is, he will come when this temple is still standing. And the splendor of this latter temple will be greater than that of the former. And this will happen shortly, i.e., "in a little while."

For it is easily understood that if the consolation of the Gentiles, whom the ancients interpret as the Messiah, did not come while that temple was still standing, but is still to come (the Jews have been waiting 1568 years already since the destruction of that temple, and this cannot be termed "a little while," especially since they cannot foresee the end of this long time), then he will never come, for he neglected to come in this little, short time, and now has entered upon the great, long time, which will never result in anything. For the prophet speaks of a short, not a long time.

But they extricate themselves from this difficulty as follows. Since they cannot ignore the words "in a little while," they take up and crucify the expression "consolation of the Gentiles," in Hebrew *chemdath,* just as they did earlier with the words shebet and shiloh in the saying of Jacob. They insist that this term does not refer to the Messiah, but that it designates the gold and silver of all the Gentiles. Grammatically, the word chemdath really means desire or pleasure; thus it would mean that the Gentiles have a desire for or take pleasure and delight in something. So the text must read thus: In a short time the desire of all Gentiles will appear. And what does this mean? What do the Gentiles desire? Gold, silver, gems! You may ask why the Jews make this kind of gloss here. I will tell you. Their breath stinks with lust for the Gentiles' gold and silver; for no nation under the sun is greedier than they were, still are, and always will be, as is evident from their accursed usury. So they comfort themselves that when the Messiah comes he will take the gold and silver of the whole world and divide it among them. Therefore, wherever they can quote Scripture to satisfy their insatiable greed, they do so outrageously. One is led to believe that God and his prophets knew of nothing else to prophesy than of ways and means to satisfy the bottomless greed of the accursed Jews with the Gentiles' gold and silver.

However, the prophet has not chosen his words properly to accord with this greedy understanding. He should have said: In a little while the desire of the Jews shall come. For the Jews are the ones who desire gold and silver more avidly than any other nation on earth. In view of that, the text should more properly speak of the desire of the Jews than of the Gentiles. For although the Gentiles do desire gold and silver, nevertheless here are the Jews who desire and covet this desire of the Gentiles, who desire that it be brought to them so that they may devour it and leave nothing for the Gentiles. Why? Because they are the noble blood, the circumcised saints who have God's commandments and do not keep them, but are stiff-necked, disobedient, prophet-murderers, arrogant, usuers, and filled with every vice, as the whole of Scripture and their present conduct bear out. Such saints, of course, are properly entitled to the Gentiles' gold and silver. They honestly and honorably deserve it for such behavior -- just as the devil deserves paradise and heaven.

Further, how does it happen that such very intelligent teachers and wise, holy prophets do not also apply the word "desire" (chemdath) to all the other desires of the Gentiles? For the Gentiles desire not only gold and silver but also pretty girls, and the women desire handsome young men. Wherever we find among the Gentiles anything other than Jews (I almost said "misers"), who will not bestow any good on their bodies, they desire also beautiful houses, gardens, cattle, and property, as well as good times, clothes, food, drink, dancing, playing, and all sorts of enjoyment. Why, then, do the Jews not interpret this verse of the prophet to mean that such desires of all the Gentiles also will shortly come to Jerusalem, so that the Jews alone might fill their bellies and feast on the world's joys? For such a mode of life Muhammad promises his Saracens. In that respect he is a genuine Jew, and the Jews are genuine Saracens according to this interpretation.

The Gentiles have another desire. How could these wise, clever interpreters overlook it? I am surprised at it. The Gentiles die, and they are afflicted with much sickness, poverty, and all kinds of distress and fear. There is not one of them who does not most ardently wish that he did not have to die, that he could avoid need, misery, and sickness, or be quickly freed from them and secure against them. This desire is so pronounced that they would gladly surrender all others for its fulfillment, as experience shows daily. Why, then, do the Jews not explain that such desire of all the Gentiles will also come to the temple in Jerusalem in a little while? Shame on you, here, there, or wherever you may be, you damned Jews, that you dare to apply this earnest, glorious, comforting word of God so despicably to your mortal, greedy belly, which is doomed to decay, and that you are not ashamed to display your greed so openly. You are not worthy of looking at the outside of the Bible, much less of reading it. You should read only the bible that is found under the sow's tail, and eat and drink the letters that drop from there. That would be a bible for such prophets, who root about like sows and tear apart like pigs the words of the divine Majesty, which should be heard with all honor, awe, and joy.

Furthermore, when the prophet says that "the splendor of this latter house shall be greater than the former," let us listen to the noble and filthy (I meant to say, circumcised ) saints and wise prophets who want to make Jews of us Christians. The greater splendor of the latter temple compared to the former consists [they say] in this: that it (that is, the temple of Haggai) stood ten years longer than the temple of Solomon, etc. Alas, if they had only had a good astronomer who could have worked out the time a little more precisely. Perhaps he would have found the difference between the two to be three months, two weeks, five days, seven hours, twelve minutes, and ten half-minutes over and above the ten years. If there were a store anywhere that offered blushes for sale, I might give the Jews a few florins to go and buy a pound of them to smear over their forehead, eyes, and cheeks, if they would refuse to cover their impudent heart and tongue with them. Or do these ignorant, stupid asses suppose that they are talking to sticks and blocks like themselves?

There were many old, gray men and women, very likely also beggars and villains in Jerusalem when Solomon, a young man of twenty years, became a glorious king. Should these, for that reason, be more glorious than Solomon? Perhaps David's mule, on which Solomon became king, was older than Solomon. Should he by reason of that be greater than Solomon? But thus those will bump their heads, stumble, and fall who incessantly give God the lie and claim that they are in the right. They deserve no better fate than to compose such glosses on the Bible, such foolishness and ignominy. This they indeed do most diligently. Therefore, dear Christian, be on your guard against the Jews, who, as you discover here, are consigned by the wrath of God to the devil, who has not only robbed them of a proper understanding of Scripture, but also of ordinary human reason, shame, and sense, and only works mischief with Holy Scripture through them. Therefore they cannot be trusted and believed in any other matter either, even though a truthful word may drop from their lips occasionally. For anyone who dares to juggle the awesome word of God so frivolously and shamefully as you see it done here, and as you also noted earlier with regard to the words of Jacob, cannot have a good spirit dwelling in him. Therefore, wherever you see a genuine Jew, you may with a good conscience cross yourself and bluntly say: "There goes a devil incarnate."

These impious scoundrels know very well that their ancient predecessors applied this verse of Haggai to the Messiah, as Lyra, Burgensis, and others testify. [97] And still they wantonly depart from this and compose their own Bible out of their own mad heads, so that they hold their wretched Jews with them in their error, in violation of their conscience and to our vexation. They think that in this way they are hurting us greatly, and that God will reward them wherever for his sake (as they imagine) they have opposed us Gentiles even in open, evident truth. But what happens, as you have seen, is that they disgrace themselves and do not harm us, and further, forfeit God and his Scripture.

Thus the verse reads: "Once again, in a little while, I will shake the heavens and the earth and the sea and the dry land (these are the islands of the sea) and the *chemdath* of all Gentiles shall come"_that is, the Messiah, the Desire of all Gentiles, which we translated into German with the word *Trost* ["consolation"]. The word "desire" does not fully express this thought, since in German it reflects the inward delight and desire of the heart (active). But here the word designates the external thing (passive) which a heart longs for. It would surely not be wrong to translate it with "the joy and delight of all Gentiles." In brief, it is the Messiah, who would be the object of displeasure, disgust, and abomination for the unbelieving and hardened Jews, as Isaiah 53 prophesies. The Gentiles, on the other hand, would bid him welcome as their heart's joy, delight, and every wish and desire. For he brings them deliverance from sin, death, devil, hell, and every evil, eternally. This is indeed, the Gentiles' desire, their heart's delight, joy, and comfort.

This agrees with the saying of Jacob in Genesis 49:10, "And to Shiloh (or the Messiah) shall be the obedience of the peoples." That is to say, they will receive him gladly, hear his word and be come his people, without coercion, without the sword. It is as if he wished to say: The ignoble, uncircumcised Gentiles will do this, but my noble rascals, my circumcised, lost children will not do it, but will rather rave and rant against it. Isaiah 2:2 and Micah 4:1] also agree with this: "It shall come to pass in the latter days that the mountain of the house of the Lord shall be established as the highest of the mountains, and shall be raised above the hills; and all the nations shall flow to it (doubtless voluntarily, motivated by desire and joy) and many people shall come, and say: 'Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his path.' For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem." Thus the prophets speak throughout of the kingdom of the Messiah established among the Gentiles.

Yes, this is it, this is the bone of contention, that is the source of the trouble, that makes the Jews so angry and foolish and spurs them to arrive at such an accursed meaning, forcing them to pervert all the statements of Scripture so shamefully: namely, they do not want, they cannot endure that we Gentiles should be their equal before God and that the Messiah should be our comfort and joy as well as theirs. I say, before they would have us Gentiles whom they incessantly mock, curse, damn, defame, and revile share the Messiah with them, and be called their co-heirs and brethren, they would crucify ten more Messiahs and kill God himself if this were possible, together with all angels and all creatures, even at the risk of incurring thereby the penalty of a thousand hells instead of one. Such an incomprehensibly stubborn pride dwells in the noble blood of the fathers and circumcised saints. They alone want to have the Messiah and be masters of the world. The accursed Goyim must be servants, give their desire (that is, their gold and silver) to the Jews, and let themselves be slaughtered like wretched cattle. They would rather remain lost consciously and eternally than give up this view.
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Acts 8:26-39

ኮትኳች


Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 215

PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2005 9:00 pm    Post subject: ከፍል ስባት - Reply with quote

ካለፈው የቀጠለ
On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543
Part 7


From their youth they have imbibed such venomous hatred against the Goyim from their parents and their rabbis, and they still continuously drink it. As Psalm 109:18 declares, it has penetrated flesh and blood, marrow and bone, and has become part and parcel of their nature and their life. And as little as they can change flesh and blood, marrow and bone, so little can they change such pride and envy. They must remain thus and perish, unless God performs extraordinarily great miracles. If I wished to vex and anger a Jew severely, I would say: "Listen, Jehudi, do you realize that I am a real brother of all the holy children of Israel and a co-heir in the kingdom of the true Messiah?" Without doubt, I would meet with a nasty rebuff. If he could stare at me with the eyes of a basilisk, he would surely do it. And all the devils could not execute the evil he would wish me, even if God were to give them leave -- of that I am certain. However, I shall refrain from doing this, and I ask also that no one else do so, for Christ's sake. For the Jews' heart and mouth would overflow with a cloudburst of cursing and blaspheming of the name of Jesus Christ and of God the Father. We must conduct ourselves well and not give them cause for this if we can avoid it, just as I must not provoke a madman if I know that he will curse and blaspheme God. Quite apart from this, the Jews hear and see enough in us for which they ever blaspheme and curse the name of Jesus in their hearts; for they really are possessed.
As we have already said, they cannot endure to hear or to see that we accursed Goyim should glory in the Messiah as our chemdath, and that we are as good as they are or as they think they are. Therefore, dear Christian, be advised and do not doubt that next to the devil, you have no more bitter, venomous, and vehement foe than a real Jew who earnestly seeks to be a Jew. There may perhaps be some among them who believe what a cow or goose believes, but their lineage and circumcision infect them all. Therefore the history books often accuse them of contaminating wells, of kidnaping and piercing children, as for example at Trent, Weissensee, etc. They, of course, deny this. Whether it is true or not, I do know that they do not lack the complete, full, and ready will to do such things either secretly or openly where possible. This you can assuredly expect from them, and you must govern yourself accordingly.

If they do perform some good deed, you may rest assured that they are not prompted by love, nor is it done with your benefit in mind. Since they are compelled to live among us, they do this for reasons of expediency; but their heart remains and is as I have described it. If you do not want to believe me, read Lyra, Burgensis, and other truthful and honest men. And even if they had not recorded it, you would find that Scripture tells of the two seeds, the serpent's and the woman's. It says that these are enemies, and that God and the devil are at variance with each other. Their own writings and prayer books also state this plainly enough.

A person who is unacquainted with the devil might wonder why they are so particularly hostile toward Christians. They have no reason to act this way, since we show them every kindness. They live among us, enjoy our shield and protection, they use our country and our highways, our markets and streets. Meanwhile our princes and rulers sit there and snore with mouths hanging open and permit the Jews to take, steal, and rob from their open money bags and treasures whatever they want. That is, they let the Jews, by means of their usury, skin and fleece them and their subjects and make them beggars with their own money. For the Jews, who are exiles, should really have nothing, and whatever they have must surely be our property. They do not work, and they do not earn anything from us, nor do we give or present it to them, and yet they are in possession of our money and goods and are our masters in our own country and in their exile. A thief is condemned to hang for the theft of ten florins, and if he robs anyone on the highway, he forfeits his head. But when a Jew steals and robs ten tons of gold through his usury, he is more highly esteemed than God himself.

In proof of this we cite the bold boast with which they strengthen their faith and give vent to their venomous hatred of us, as they say among themselves: "Be patient and see how God is with us, and does not desert his people even in exile. We do not labor, and yet we enjoy prosperity and leisure. The accursed Goyim have to work for us, but we get their money. This makes us their masters and them our servants. Be patient, dear children of Israel, better times are in store for us, our Messiah will still come if we continue thus and acquire the chemdath of all the Gentiles by usury and other methods." Alas, this is what we endure for them. They are under our shield and protection, and yet, as I have said, they curse us. But we shall revert to this later.

We are now speaking about the fact that they cannot tolerate having us as co-heirs in the kingdom of the Messiah, and that he is our chemdath, as the prophets abundantly attest. What does God say about this? He says that he will give the chemdath to the Gentiles, and that their obedience shall be pleasing to him, as Jacob affirms in Genesis 49, together with all the prophets. He says that he will oppose the obduracy of the Jews most strenuously, rejecting them and choosing and accepting the Gentiles, even though the latter are not of the noble blood of the fathers or circumcised saints. For thus says Hosea 2:23: "And I will say to Not my people, 'You are my people'; and he shall say, 'Thou are my God.'" But to the Jew he says [in Hos. 1:9]: "Call his name Not my people (lo-ammi), for you are not my people and I am not your God." Moses. too, had sung this long ago in his song [Deut. 32:21]: "They have stirred me to jealousy with what is no god; they have provoked me with their vain deeds. So I will stir them to jealousy with those who are no people; I will provoke them with a foolish nation." This verse has been in force now for nearly fifteen hundred years. We foolish Gentiles, who were not God's people, are now God's people. That drives the Jews to distraction and stupidity, and over this they became Not-God's-people, who were once his people and really should still be.

But let us conclude our discussion of the saying of Haggai. We have convincing proof that the Messiah, the Gentiles' *chemdath,* appeared at the time when this temple was standing. Thus the ancients understood it, and the inane flimsy glosses of the present-day Jews also testify to this, since they do not know how to deny it except by speaking of their own shame. For he who gives a hollow, meaningless, and irrelevant answer shows that he is defeated and condemns himself. It would have been better and less shameful if he had kept quiet, rather than giving a pointless answer that disgraces him. Thus Haggai 2:6 says, "Once again, in a little while, I will shake the heavens and the earth and the sea and the dry land; and I will shake all nations, and the desire of all the Gentiles shall come." This is how I, in the simplicity of my mind, understand these words: Since the beginning of the world there has been enmity between the seed of the serpent and that of the woman, and there has always been conflict between them, sometimes more, sometimes less.

For wherever the Seed of the woman is or appears, he causes strife and discord. This he says in the Gospel: "I have not come to bring peace on earth, but a sword and disunity" [cf. Matt. 10:34]. He takes the armor from the strong man fully armed who had peace in his palace [Luke 11:22]. The latter cannot tolerate this, and the strife is on; angels contend against the devils in the air, and man against man on earth -- all on account of the woman's Seed. To be sure, there is plenty of strife, war, and unrest in the world otherwise too; but since it is not undertaken on account of this Seed, it is an insignificant thing in God's eyes, for in this conflict all the angels are involved.

Since the advent of this Seed, or of the Messiah, was close at hand, Haggai says "in a little." This means that until now the strife has been confined solely to my people Israel, that is, restricted to a small area. The devil was ever intent upon devouring them and he set all the surrounding kings upon them. For he was well aware that the promised Seed was in the people of Israel, the Seed that was to despoil him. Therefore he was always eager to harass them. And he instigated one disturbance, dissatisfaction, war, and strife after another. Well and good, now it will be but "a little while," and I shall give him strife aplenty. I will initiate a struggle, and a good one at that, not only in a narrow nook and corner among the people of Israel, but as far as heaven and earth extend, on the sea and on dry land, that is, where it is wet and where it is dry, whether on the mainland or on the islands, at the sea or on the waters, wherever human beings dwell. Or as he says, "I will shake all the Gentiles," so that all the angels will contend with all the devils in heaven or in the air, and all men on earth will quarrel over the Seed.

For I shall send the chemdath to all Gentiles. They will love him and adhere to him, as Genesis 49 says, "The Gentiles will gather about him," and, on the other hand, they will grow hostile to the devil, the old serpent, and defect from him. Then all will take its due course when the god and the prince of the world grows wrathful, raves and rages because he is obliged to yield his kingdom, his house, his equipment, his worship, his power, to the chemdath and Shiloh, the woman's Seed. Anyone can read the histories that date back to the time of Christ and learn how first the Jews and Gentiles, then the heretics, finally Muhammad, and at present the pope, have raged and still are raging "against the Lord and his Messiah" (Psalm 2 [:2]), and he will understand the words of Haggai that speak of shaking all the nations, etc. There is not a corner in the world nor a spot in the sea where the gospel has not resounded and brought the chemdath, as Psalm 1819:3-4 declares: "There is no speech, nor are there words; their voice is not heard; yet their voice goes out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world." The devil too appeared promptly on the scene with murder by the hands of tyrants, with lies spoken by heretics, with all his devilish wiles and powers, which he still employs to impede and obstruct the course of the gospel. This is the strife in question.

I shall begin the story of this struggle with that great villain, Antiochus the Noble. Approximately three hundred years elapsed between the time of Haggai and that of Antiochus. This is the short span of time in which peace prevailed. For the kings in Persia were very kind to them, nor did Alexander harm them, and they fared well also under his successors, up to the time of this filthy Antiochus, who ushered in the unrest and the misfortune. Through him the devil sought to exterminate the woman's Seed. He pillaged the city of Jerusalem, the temple, the country and its inhabitants, he desecrated the temple and raged as his god, the devil, impelled him. Practically all the good fortune of the Jews terminated right here. Down to the present, they have never recovered their former position, and they never will.

This will serve to supply a proper understanding of the Jews' glosses which say that the "chemdath of all the Gentiles," that is, gold and silver, flowed into this temple. If the earlier kings had put anything into it, then this one took it all away again. This turns their glosses upside down to read: Antiochus distributes the chemdath of all Jews among the Gentiles. Thus this verse of Haggai cannot be understood of the Gentiles' shirt or coat. For following these three hundred years, or this "little while," and from then on, they did not get much from the Gentiles, but rather were compelled to give them much. Soon after this, the Romans came and made a clean sweep of it, and placed Herod over them as king. What Herod gave them, they soon learned. Therefore, from the time of Antiochus on they enjoyed but a small measure of peace. Daniers report also stops with Antiochus, as if to say: Now the end is at hand and all is over, now the Messiah is standing at the door, who will stir up ever more contention.

The detestable Antiochus not only despoiled and desecrated the temple but he also suppressed the shebet or sultan, the prince in the house of David, namely, the last prince, John Hyrcanus. None of his descendants again ascended the throne of David or became ruler. Only the saphra or mehoquq remained till Herod. From that point on David's house looked as if its light had been extinguished, and as if there were no shultan or scepter in Judah. It had in fact come to an end, although there were about one hundred and fifty years left until the coming of the Messiah. Such an occurrence is not unusual; anything that is going to break will first crack or burst apart a little. Whatever is going to sink will first submerge or sway a little. The scepter of Judah went through the same process toward the end: it became weak, it groaned and moaned for one hundred and fifty years until it fell apart entirely at the hands of the Romans and of Herod. During these one hundred and fifty years the princes of Judah did not rule but lived as common citizens, perhaps quite impoverished. For Mary, Christ's mother in Nazareth, states that she is a handmaid of poor and low estate [Luke 1:48].

It is also true, however, that the Maccabees fought victoriously against Antiochus. Daniel 11:34 refers to this as "a little help." Those who in this way ascended the throne of David and assumed the rule were priests from the tribe of Levi and Aaron. Now one could say with good reason that the royal and the priestly tribes were mixed. For in II Chronicles 22:11 we read that Jehoshabeath, the daughter of King Jehoram and the sister of King Ahaziah, was the wife of Jehoiada, the high priest. Thus, coming from the royal house of Solomon, she was grafted into the priestly tribe and became one trunk and tree with it. Therefore she was the ancestress of all the descendants of Jehoiada the priest, a true Sarah of the priestly family. Therefore the Maccabees may indeed be called David's blood and children, as viewed from the maternal lineage. For descent from a mother is just as valid as that from a father. This is recognized also in other countries. For instance, our Emperor Charles is king in Spain by virtue of his descent from his mother and not from his father; and his father Philip was duke of Burgundy not because of his father, Maximilian, but because of his mother, Mary.

Thus David calls all the children of Jehoiada and of Jehoshabeath his natural children, his sons and daughters, because Jehoshabeath was descended from his son Solomon. So through the Maccabees, Solomon's family regained rule and scepter through the maternal side, after it had been lost through Ahaziah on the paternal side. It remained in David's family until Herod, who did away with it and abolished both shultan and saphra or the Sanhedrin. Now finally, there lies the scepter of Judah and the mehoqeq, there the house of David is darkened on both the paternal and the maternal sides. Therefore the Messiah must now be at hand, the true Light of David, the true Son, who had sustained his house until that time and who would sustain it and enlighten it from that point on to all eternity. This conforms to God's promise that the scepter of Judah will remain until the Messiah appears and that the house of David will be preserved forever and will never die out. But, as we said, despite all of this God must be the Jews' liar, who has not yet sent the Messiah as he promised and vowed.

Furthermore, God says through Haggai: "I will fill this house with splendor. The silver is mine, and the gold is mine. The splendor of this latter house shall be greater than the former," etc. [Hag. 2:7 f.]. It is true that this temple displayed great splendor during the three hundred years prior to Antiochus, since the Persians and the successors of Alexander, the kings in Syria and King Philadelphus in Egypt, contributed much toward it. But despite all of this, it did not compare in magnificence with the first temple, the temple of Solomon. The text must refer to a different splendor here, or else Solomon's temple will far surpass it. For in the first temple there was also an abundance of gold and silver, and in addition the ark of the covenant, the mercy-seat, the cherubim, Moses' tablets, Aaron's rod, the bread of heaven in the golden vessel, Aaron's robes, also the Urim and Thummin and the sacred oil with which the kings and priests were anointed (Burgensis on Daniel 9) . When Solomon dedicated this temple, fire fell from heaven and consumed the sacrifice, and the temple was filled with what he called a cloud of divine Majesty [II Chron. 5:13, 7:1]. God himself was present in this cloud, as Solomon himself says: "The Lord has said that he would dwell in thick darkness" [II Chron. 6:1]. He had done the same thing in the wilderness as he hovered over Moses' tabernacle.
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Acts 8:26-39

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Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 215

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2005 5:11 pm    Post subject: ክፍል ሰባት - (የቀጠለ ) Reply with quote

ካለፈው የቀጠለ
On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543

Martin Luther (1483 - 1546)

Translated by Martin H. Bertram
Part 7 (...continued)

There was none of this splendor, surpassing gold and silver, in the temple of Haggai. Yet God says that it will show forth greater splendor than the first one. Let the Jews pipe up and say what constituted this greater splendor. They cannot pass over this in silence, for the text and the confession of the ancient Jews, their forefathers, both state that the *chemdath* of the Gentiles, the Messiah, came at the time when the same temple stood and glorified it highly with his presence. We Christians know that our Lord Jesus Christ, the true chemdath, was presented in the temple by his mother, and that he himself often taught and did miracles there. This is the true cloud -- his tender humanity, in which God manifested his presence and let himself be seen and heard. The blind Jews may deride this, but our faith is strengthened by it, until they can adduce a splendor of the temple excelling this chemdath of all the Gentiles. That they will do when they erect the third temple, that is to say, when God is a liar, when the devil is the truth, and when they themselves again take possession of Jerusalem -- not before.

Josephus writes that Herod razed the temple of Haggai because it was not sufficiently splendid, and rebuilt it so that it was equal or superior to the temple of Solomon in splendor. I would be glad to believe the history books; however, even if this temple had been constructed of diamonds and rubies, it would still have lacked the items mentioned from that sublime, old holy place -- namely, the ark, the mercy-seat, the cherubim, etc. Furthermore, since Herod had not been commissioned by God to build it, but did so as an impious enemy of God and of his people, motivated by vanity and pride, in his own honor, his whole structure and work was not as good a, the most puny little stone that Zerubbabel placed into the temple by command of God. Herod certainly did not merit much grace for tearing down and desecrating the temple which had been commanded, built, and consecrated by the word of God, and then presuming to erect a much more glorious one without God's word and command. God permitted this out of consideration for the place which he had selected for the temple, and so that the destruction of the temple might have the negative significance that the people of Israel should henceforth be without temple, word of God, and all, that it instead would be given wholly to the splendor of the world, under the guise of the service to God.

This temple was not only less splendid than Solomon's, but it was also violated in many ways more terribly than Solomon's temple, and was often completely desecrated. This happened first, against the will of the Jews, when Antiochus robbed it of all its contents, placed an idol on the altar, sacrificed pork, and made a regular pig-sty and an idolatrous desolation of the temple, instituting a horrible slaughter in Jerusalem as though he were the devil himself, as we read in I Maccabees 1 and as Daniel11 had predicted. No lesser outrage was committed by the Romans, and especially by that filthy Emperor Caligula, who also placed his mark of abomination in the temple. Daniel 9 and 12 speak of this. Such ignominy and disgrace were not experienced by Solomon's temple at the hands of Gentiles and foreigners. This makes it difficult to see how Haggai's words were fulfilled, "I will fill this temple with glory which will exceed the glory of that temple." One might rather say that it was filled with dishonor exceeding the dishonor of that temple, that is, if one thinks of external and outward honor. Consequently, if Haggai's words are to be accounted true, he must be referring to a different kind of splendor.

Second, the Jews themselves also desecrated this temple more viciously than the other one ever was desecrated: namely, with spiritual idolatries. Lyra writes, and others too, in many passages, that the Jews, after their return from the Babylonian captivity, did not commit idolatry or sin by killing prophets as gravely as before. Thereby he wants to prove that their present exile must be due to a more heinous sin than idolatry, the murder of the prophets, etc. -- namely, the crucifixion of the Messiah. This argument is good, valid, and cogent. That they no longer killed the prophets is not to be attributed to a lack of evil intentions, but to the fact that they no longer had any prophets who reproved their idolatry, greed, and other vices. That is why they could no longer kill prophets. To be sure, the last prophet, Malachi, who began to rebuke the priests, barely escaped (if indeed he did escape).

But they did practice idolatry more outrageously at the time of this temple than at the time of the other_not the coarse, palpable, stupid variety, but the subtle, spiritual kind. Zechariah portrays this under the image of a flying scroll and of an ephah going forth (Zechariah 5:2,6). And Zechariah 11:12 and 12:10 foretell the infamy of their selling God for thirty pieces of silver and their piercing him through. More on that elsewhere; is it not shame enough that the priests at the same time perverted God's Ten Commandments so flagrantly? Tell me, what idolatry compares with the abomination of changing the word of God into lies? To do that is truly to set up idols, i.e., false gods, under the cloak of God's name; and that is forbidden in the second commandment, which reads: "You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain."

Why, their Talmud and their rabbis record that it is no sin for a Jew to kill a Gentile, but it is only a sin for him to kill a brother Israelite. Nor is it a sin for a Jew to break his oath to a Gentile. Likewise, they say that it is rendering God a service to steal or rob from a Goy, as they in fact do through their usury. For since they believe that they are the noble blood and the circumcised saints and we the accursed Goyim, they cannot treat us too harshly or commit sin against us, for they are the lords of the world and we are their servants, yes, their cattle.

In brief, our evangelists also tell us what their rabbis taught. In Matthew 15:4 we read that they abrogated the fourth commandment, which enjoins honor of father and mother; and in Matthew 23, that they were given to much shameful doctrine, not to mention what Christ says in Matthew 5 about how they preached and interpreted the Ten Commandments so deviously, how they installed money-changers, traders, and all sorts of usurers in the temple, prompting our Lord to say that they had made the house of God into a den of robbers [Matt. 21:13; Luke 19:46]. Now figure out for yourself what a great honor that is and how the temple is filled with such glory that God must call his own house a den of robbers because so many souls had been murdered through their greedy, false doctrine, that is, through double idolatry. The Jews still persist in such doctrine to the present day. They imitate their fathers and pervert God's word. They are steeped in greed, in usury, they steal and murder where they can and ever teach their children to do likewise.

Even this is not the greatest shame of this temple. The real abomination of all abominations, the shame of all shames, is this: that at the time of this temple there were several chief priests and an entire sect which were Sadducean, that is, Epicurean, who did not believe in the existence of any angel, devil, heaven, hell, or life after this life. And such fellows were expected to enter the temple, vested with the priestly office and in priestly garments, and sacrifice, pray, and offer burnt offerings for the people, preach to them, and rule them! Tell me? how much worse could Antiochus have been, with his idol and his sacrifice of pork, than were these Sadducean pigs and sows? In view of this, what remains of Haggai's statement that this temple's glory was greater than that of Solomon's temple? Before God and reason, a real pig-sty might be called a royal hall when compared with this temple, because of such great, horrible, and monstrous sows.

How much more honorably do the pagan philosophers, as well as the poets, write and teach not only about God's rule and about the life to come but also about temporal virtues. They teach that man by nature is obliged to serve his fellow man, to keep faith also with his enemies, and to be loyal and helpful especially in time of need. Thus Cicero and his kind teach. Indeed, I believe that three of Aesop's fables, half of Cato, and several comedies of Terence contain more wisdom and more instruction about good works than can be found in the books of all the Talmudists and rabbis and more than may ever occur to the hearts of all the Jews.

Someone may think that I am saying too much. I am not saying too much, but too little- for I see their writings. They curse us Goyim. In their synagogues and in their prayers they wish us every misfortune. They rob us of our money and goods through their usury, and they play on us every wicked trick they can. And the worst of it is that they still claim to have done right and well, that is, to have done God a service. And they teach the doing of such things. No pagan ever acted thus; in fact, no one acts thus except the devil himself, or whomever he possesses, as he has possessed the Jews.

Burgensis, who was one of their very learned rabbis, and who through the grace of God became a Christian a very rare happening is much agitated by the fact that they curse us Christians so vilely in their synagogues (as Lyra also writes), and he deduces from this that they cannot be God's people. For if they were, they would emulate the example of the Jews in the Babylonian captivity. To them Jeremiah wrote, "Seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare" [Jer. 29:7]. But our bastards and pseudo-Jews think they must curse us, hate us, and inflict every possible harm upon us, although they have no cause for it. Therefore they surely are no longer God's people. But we shall say more about this later.

To return to the subject of Haggai's temple, it is certain that no house was ever disgraced more than this holy house of God was by such vile sows as the Sadducees and Pharisees. Yet Christ calls it God's house, because the four pillars are his. Therefore, to offset this disgrace a greater and different splendor must have inhered in it than that of silver and gold. If not, Haggai will fare ill with his prophecy that the splendor of this temple will surpass that of Solomon's temple. Amid such colossal shame no splendor can be found here other than that of the chemdath, who will appear in a short time and surpass such shame with his splendor. The Jews can produce no other splendor; their mouth is stopped.
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Acts 8:26-39

ኮትኳች


Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 215

PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2005 4:06 am    Post subject: ክፍል ስምንት - Reply with quote

ካለፈው የቀጠለ
On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543

Martin Luther (1483 - 1546)

Translated by Martin H. Bertram
Part 8

I must break off here and leave the last part of Haggai to others, the section in which he prophesies that the Lord, as he says, "will give peace in this place" [cf. Hag. 2:9b]. Can it be possible that this applies to the time from Antiochus up to the present during which the Jews have experienced every misfortune and are still in exile? For there shall be peace in this place, says the Lord. The place is still there; the temple and peace have vanished. No doubt the Jews will be able to interpret this. The history books inform me that there was but little peace prior to Antiochus for about three hundred years, and subsequent to that time none at all down to the present hour, except for the peace that reigned at the time of the Maccabees. As I have already said, I shall leave this to others.
Finally we must lend ear to the great prophet Daniel. A special angel with a proper name Gabriel talks with him. The like of this is not found elsewhere in the Old Testament. The fact that the angel is mentioned by name marks it as something extraordinary. This is what he tells Daniel: "Seventy weeks of years are decreed concerning your people and your holy city, to finish the transgression, to put an end to sin, and to atone for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal both vision and prophet, and to anoint a most holy place" [Dan. 9:24].

We cannot now discuss this rich text, which actually is one of the foremost in all of Scripture. And, as is only natural, everybody has reflected on it; for it not only fixes the time of Christ's advent but also foretells what he will do, namely, take away sin, bring righteousness, and do this by means of his death. It establishes Christ as the Priest who bears the sin of the whole world. This, I say, we must now set aside and deal only with the question of the time, as we determined to do, whether such a Messiah or Priest has already come or is still to come. [This we do] for the strengthening of our faith, against all devils and men.

In the first place, there is complete agreement on this: that the seventy weeks are not weeks of days but of years; that one week comprises seven years, which produces a sum total of four hundred and ninety years. That is the first point. Second, it is also agreed that these seventy weeks had ended when Jerusalem was destroyed by the Romans. There is no difference of opinion on these two points, although many are in the dark when it comes to the matter of knowing the precise time of which these seventy weeks began and when they terminated. It is not necessary for us to settle this question here, since it is generally assumed that they were fulfilled about the time of the destruction of Jerusalem. This will suffice us for the present.

If this is true, as it must be true, since after the destruction of Jerusalem none of the seventy weeks was left, then the Messiah must have come before the destruction of Jerusalem, while something of those seventy weeks still remained: namely, the last week, as the text later clearly and convincingly attests. After the seven and sixty-two weeks (that is, after sixty-nine weeks), namely, in the last or seventieth week, Christ will be killed, in such a way, however, that he will become alive again. For the angel says that "he shall make a strong covenant with many in the last week" [Dan. 9:27]. This he cannot do while dead; he must be alive. "To make a covenant" can have no other meaning than to fulfill God's promise given to the fathers, namely, to disseminate the blessing promised in Abraham's seed to all the Gentiles. As the angel states earlier [v. 24], the visions and prophecies shall be sealed or fulfilled. This requires a live Messiah, who, however, has previously been killed. But the Jews will have none of this. Therefore we shall let it rest at that and hold to our opinion that the Messiah must have appeared during these seventy weeks; this the Jews cannot refute.

For in their books as well as in certain histories we learn that not just a few Jews but all of Jewry at that time assumed that the Messiah must have come or must be present at that very moment. This is what we want to hear! When Herod was forcibly made king of Judah and Israel by the Romans, the Jews surely realized that the scepter would thus depart from them. They resisted this move vigorously, and in the thirty years of their resistance many thousand Jews were slain and much blood was shed, until they finally surrendered in exhaustion. In the meantime the Jews looked about for the Messiah. Thus a hue and cry arose that the Messiah had been born_as, in truth, he had been. For our Lord Christ was born in the thirtieth year of Herod's reign. But Herod forcibly suppressed this report, slaying all the young children in the region of Bethlehem, so that our Lord had to be taken for refuge to Egypt. Herod even killed his own son because he was born of a Jewish mother. He was worried that through this son the scepter might revert to the Jews and that he might gain the Jews' loyalty, since, as Philo records, the rumor of the birth of Christ had been spread abroad.

As our evangelists relate, more than thirty years later John the Baptist comes out of the wilderness and proclaims that the Lord had not only been born but also was already among them and would reign shortly after him. Suddenly thereafter Christ himself appears, preaches, and performs great miracles, so that the Jews hoped that now, after the loss of the scepter, Shiloh had come. But the chief priests, the rulers, and their followers took offense at the person, since he did not appear as a mighty king but wandered about as a poor beggar. They had made up their mind that the Messiah would unite the Jews and not only wrest the scepter from the foreign king but also subdue the Romans and all the world under himself with the sword, installing them as mighty princes over all the Gentiles. When they were disappointed in these expectations, the noble blood and circumcised saints were vexed, as people who had the promise of the kingdom and could not attain it through this beggar. Therefore they despised him and did not accept him.
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Acts 8:26-39

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Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 215

PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2005 6:40 am    Post subject: ክፍል ስምንት - Reply with quote

ካለፈው የቀጠለ
ክፍል 8 -
On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543

Martin Luther (1483 - 1546)

Translated by Martin H. Bertram


But when they disdained John and his [Christ's] message and miracles, reviling them as the deeds of Beelzebub, he spoiled and ruined matters entirely. He rebuked and chided them severely something he should not, of course, have done for being greedy, evil, and disobedient children, false teachers, seducers of the people, etc.; in brief, a brood of serpents and children of the devil. On the other hand, he was friendly to sinners and tax collectors, to Gentiles and to Romans, giving the impression that he was the foe of the people of Israel and the friend of Gentiles and villains. Now the fat was really in the fire; they grew wrathful, bitter, and hateful, and ranted against him; finally they contrived the plot to kill him. And that is what they did; they crucified him as ignominiously as possible. They gave free rein to their anger, so that even the Gentile Pilate noticed this and testified that they were condemning and killing him out of hatred and envy, innocently and without cause.

When they had executed this false Messiah (that is the conception they wanted to convey of him), they still did not abandon the delusion that the Messiah had to be at hand or nearby. They constantly murmured against the Romans because of the scepter. Soon, too, the rumor circulated that Jesus, whom they had killed, had again arisen and that he was now really being proclaimed openly and freely as the Messiah. The people in the city of Jerusalem were adhering to him, as well as the Gentiles in Antioch and everywhere in the country. Now they really had their hands full. They had to oppose this dead Messiah and his followers, lest he be accepted as resurrected and as the Messiah. They also had to oppose the Romans, lest their hoped-for Messiah be forever bereft of the scepter. At one place a slaughter of the Christians was initiated, at another an uprising against the Romans. To these tactics they devoted themselves for approximately forty years, until the Romans finally were constrained to lay waste country and city. This delusion regarding their false Christ and their persecution of the true Christ cost them eleven times one hundred thousand men, as Josephus reports, together with the most horrible devastation of country and city, as well as the forfeiture of scepter, temple, priesthood, and all that they possessed.

This deep and cruel humiliation, which is terrible to read and to hear about, surely should have made them pliable and humble. Alas, they became seven times more stubborn, viler, and prouder than before. This was due in part to the fact that in their dispersion they had to witness how the Christians daily grew and increased with their Messiah. The saying of Moses found in Deuteronomy 32:21 was now completely fulfilled in them: "They have stirred me to jealousy with what is no god; so I will stir them to jealousy with those who are no people." Likewise, as Hosea says: "I will say to Not my people, 'You are my people,' but you are not my people and I am not your God" (Hosea 2:23, l:9). They stubbornly insisted on having their own Messiah in whom the Gentiles should not claim a share, and they persisted in trying to exterminate this Messiah in whom both Jews and Gentiles gloried. Everywhere throughout the Roman Empire they intervened and wherever they could ferret out a Christian in any corner they dragged him out before the judges and accused him (they themselves could not pass sentence on him, since they had neither legal authority nor power) until they had him killed. Thus they shed very much Christian blood and made innumerable martyrs, also outside the Roman Empire, in Persia and wherever they could.

Still they clung to the delusion that the Messiah must have appeared, since the seventy weeks of Daniel had expired and the temple of Haggai had been destroyed. However, they disliked the person of Jesus of Nazareth, and therefore they went ahead and elevated one of their own number to be the Messiah. This came about as follows: They had a rabbi, or Talmudist, named Akiba, a very learned man, esteemed by them more highly than all other rabbis, a venerable, honorable, gray-haired man. He taught the verses of Haggai and of Daniel, also of Jacob in Genesis 49, with ardor, saying that there had to be a Messiah among the people of God since the time fixed by Scripture was at hand. Then he chose one, surnamed Kokhba, which means "a star." According to Burgensis his right name was Heutoliba. He is well known in all the history books, where he is called Ben Koziba or Bar Koziban. This man had to be their Messiah; and he gladly complied. All the people and the rabbis rallied about him and armed themselves thoroughly with the intention of doing away with both Christians and Romans. Now they had the Messiah fashioned to their liking and their mind, who was proclaimed by the aforementioned passages of Scripture.

This unrest began approximately thirty years after the destruction of Jerusalem, under the reign of the emperor Trajan. Rabbi Akiba was Kokhba's prophet and spirit who inflamed and incited him and vehemently urged him on, applying all the verses of Scripture that deal with the Messiah to him before all the people and proclaiming: "You are the Messiah!" He applied to him especially the saying of Balaam recorded in Numbers 24:17-19, by reason of his surname Kokhba ("star"). For in that passage Balaam says in a vision: "A star shall come forth out of Jacob, and a scepter shall rise out of Israel; it shall crush the forehead of Moab, and break down all the sons of Sheth. Edom shall be dispossessed, Seir also, his enemies, shall be dispossessed, while Israel does valiantly. By Jacob shall dominion be exercised, and the survivors of cities be destroyed!"

That was a proper sermon for thoroughly misleading such a foolish, angry, restive mob_which is exactly what happened. To insure the success of this venture and guard against its going awry, that exalted and precious Rabbi Akiba, the old fool and simpleton, made himself Kokhba's guardsman or armor-bearer, his *armiger,* as the history books have it; if I am not translating the term correctly, let some one else improve on it. The person is meant who is positioned beside the king or prince and whose chief duty it is to defend him on the battlefield or in combat, either on horse or on foot. To be sure, something more is implied here, since he is also a prophet, a Monzer (to use contemporary terms). So this is where the scepter of Judah and the Messiah now resided; they are sure of it. They carried on like this for some thirty years. Kokhba always had himself addressed as King Messiah, and butchered throngs of Christians who refused to deny our Messiah Jesus Christ. His captains also harassed the Romans where they could. Especially in Egypt they at one time defeated the Roman captain during the reign of Trajan. Now their heart, brain, and belly began to swell with conceit. God, they inferred, had to be for them and with them. They occupied a town near Jerusalem, called Bittir; in the Bible it is known as Beth-horon [Josh. 10:10].

At this point they were convinced that their Messiah, King Kokhba, was the lord of the world and had vanquished the Christians and the Romans and had carried the day. But Emperor Hadrian sent his army against them, laid siege to Bittir, conquered it, and slew Messiah and prophet, star and darkness, lord and armor-bearer. Their own books lament that there were twice eighty thousand men at Bittir who blew the trumpets, who were captains over vast hosts of men, and that forty times one hundred thousand men were slain, not including those slain at Alexandria. The latter are said to have numbered twelve times one hundred thousand. However, it seems to me that they are exaggerating enormously. I interpret this to mean that the two times eighty thousand trumpeters represent that many valiant and able-bodied men equipped for battle, each of whom would have been able to lead large bodies of soldiers in battle. Otherwise this sounds too devilishly mendacious.
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Acts 8:26-39

ኮትኳች


Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 215

PostPosted: Sat Dec 03, 2005 5:30 pm    Post subject: የፕሮቴስታንት ሃይማኖት መስራች -ማርቲን ሉተር - ፀረ ሴማዊነት Reply with quote

ካለፈው የቀጠለ
ክፍል 8 -
On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543

Martin Luther (1483 - 1546)

Translated by Martin H. Bertram

After this formidable defeat they themselves called Kokhba, their lost Messiah, "Kozba," which rhymes with it and has a similar ring. For thus write their Talmudists: You must not read "Kokhba," but "Kozba." Therefore all history books now refer to him as Koziban. "Kozba" means "false." His attempt had miscarried, and he had proved a false and not a true Messiah. Just as we Germans might say by way of rhyme: You are not a Deutscher but a Taoscher ["not a German but a deceiver"]; not a Welscher but a Felscher ["not a foreigner of Romance origin but a falsifier"]. Of a usurer I may say: You are not a Borger, but a Worger ["not a citizen but a slayer"]. Such rhyming is customary in all languages. Our Eusebius reports this story in his Ecclesiastical History, Book 4, chapter 6. Here he uses the name Barcochabas, saying that this was an extremely cruel battle in which the Jews "were driven so far from their country that their impious eyes were no longer able to see their fatherland even if they ascended the highest mountains.

Such horrible stories are sufficient witness that all of Jewry understood that this had to be the time of the Messiah, since the seventy weeks had elapsed, Haggai's temple had been destroyed, and the scepter had been wrested from Judah, as the statements of Jacob in Genesis 49, of Haggai 2, and of Daniel 9 clearly indicated and announced. God be praised that we Christians are certain and confident of our belief that the true Messiah, Jesus Christ, did come at that time. To prove this, we have not only his miraculous deeds, which the Jews themselves cannot deny, but also the gruesome downfall and misfortune, because of the name of the Messiah, of his enemies who wanted to exterminate him together with all his adherents. How could they otherwise have brought such misery upon their heads if they had not been convinced that the time of the Messiah was at hand? And I think this does surely constitute coming to grief and running their heads (now for the second time ) against "the stone of offence and the rock of stumbling," to quote Isaiah 8:14. So many hundreds of thousands attempted to devour Jesus of Nazareth, but over this they themselves "stumbled and fell and were broken, snared, and taken," as Isaiah says [8:15].

Since two such terrible and awesome attempts had most miserably failed, the first at Jerusalem under Vespasian, the other at Bittir under Hadrian, they surely should have come to their senses, have become pliable and humble, and concluded: God help us! How does this happen? The time of the Messiah's advent has, in accord with the prophets' words and promises, come and gone, and we are beaten so terribly and cruelly over it! What if our ideas regarding the Messiah that he should be a secular Kokhba have deceived us, and he came in a different manner and form? Is it possible that the Messiah is Jesus of Nazareth, to whom so many Jews and Gentiles adhere, who daily perform so many wondrous signs? Alas, they became seven times more stubborn and baser than before. Their conception of a worldly Messiah must be right and cannot fail; there must be a mistake about the designated time. The prophets must be lying and fail rather than they. They will have nothing of this Jesus, even if they must pervert all of Scripture, have no god, and never get a Messiah. That's the way they want it.

Since they were beaten into defenseless impotence by the Romans, from that time on they have turned against Scripture, and have boldly tried to take it from us and to pervert it with strange and different interpretations. They have digressed from the understanding of all their forefathers and prophets, and furthermore from their own reason. Because of this they have lost so many hundreds of thousands of men, land, and city, and have fallen prey to every misery. They have done nothing these fourteen hundred years but take any verse which we Christians apply to our Messiah and violate it, tear it to bits, crucify it, and twist it in order to give it a different nose and mask. They deal with it as their fathers dealt with our Lord Christ on Good Friday, making God appear as the liar but themselves as the truthful ones, as you heard before. They assign practically ten different interpretations to Jacob's saying in Genesis 49. Likewise they know how to twist the nose of Haggai's statement. Here you have two good illustrations which show you how masterfully the Jews exegete the Scriptures, in such a way that they do not arrive at any definite meaning.

They have also distorted in this way the passage from Daniel. I cannot enumerate all their shameful glosses, but shall submit just one -- the one which Lyra and Burgensis consider to be the most famous and widespread among the Jews, from which they dare not depart on pain of losing their souls. It reads as follows. Gabriel says to Daniel: "Seventy weeks of years are decreed concerning your people and your holy city, to finish the transgression, to put an end to sin, and to atone for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal both vision and prophet, and to anoint a most holy place, ..." [Dan. 9:24]. This is the text. Now their beautiful commentary follows:

"It will still be seventy weeks before Jerusalem will be destroyed and the Jews are led into exile by the Romans. This will happen so that they may be induced by this exile to depart from their sins, that they may be punished for them, pay for them, render satisfaction, atone for them, and thus become pious eternally and merit the fulfillment of the messianic promises, the reconstruction of the holy temple," etc.

Here you perceive, in the first place, that the Jews' immeasurable holiness presumes that God will fulfill his promise regarding the Messiah not because of his sheer grace and mercy but because of their merit and repentance and their extraordinary piety. And how could or should God, that poor fellow, do otherwise? For when he promised the Messiah to Jacob, David, and Haggai out of sheer grace, he neither thought nor knew that such great saints whose merits would exact the Messiah from his would appear after seventy weeks and after the destruction of Jerusalem, that he would have to grant the Messiah not out of grace but would be obliged to send him by reason of their great purity and holiness, when, where, and in the way that they desired. Such is the imposing story of the Jews, who repented after the seventy weeks and became so pious.

You can easily infer that they did not repent, nor were they pious before and during the seventy weeks. As a result the priests in Jerusalem all starved to death because there was no penance, no sin or guilt offerings (which the priests needed for sustenance). All this was postponed and saved for the penance and holiness which were to begin after the seventy weeks. Where there is no repentance, or anything to repent for, there is no sin. But where then, we wonder, did the sin come from for which they have to repent after the seventy weeks, since they had atoned daily through so many sacrifices of the priests, ordained by Moses for this purpose, for all previous sin? Why do they have to begin to do penance now after the seventy weeks, when temple, office, sacrifice for sins no longer exist?

But the following even surpasses this. Gabriel says, according to their gloss, that the Jews will repent and become pious after the seventy weeks, so that the Messiah will come on account of their merit. Well and good, here we have it! If Gabriel is speaking the truth and not lying, then the Jews have now repented, they have become pious, they have merited the Messiah ever since the passing of those seventy weeks. For he says that all of this will be done by the Jews subsequent to the seventy weeks. What follows now? They confess, indeed they wail, that the Messiah has not come since the end of those seventy weeks, that he has not come to date, approximately 1468 years later; nor do they know when he will come. So they will also have to confess that they have not done penance for any sin nor become pious during these 1468 years following the seventy weeks, nor merited the Messiah. It follows that the angel Gabriel must be lying when he promises in God's behalf that the Jews will repent, be pious, and merit the Messiah after the seventy weeks.

In Leviticus 26:40 and in Deuteronomy 4:29 and 30:1, Moses, too, proves very clearly that they have never sincerely done penance for sin since the seventy weeks. In many beautiful words he promises that God will return them to their fatherland, even if they are dispersed to the end of the heavens, etc., if they turn to God with all their heart and confess their sin. Moses utters these words as the spokesman of God, whom one must not accuse of lying. Since the Jews have not been returned to their country to date, it is proved that they have never repented for sin with all their heart since the seventy weeks. So it must be falsehood when they incorrectly interpret Gabriel as speaking about their repentance.

We also know that God is so gracious by nature that he forgives man his sin in every hour in which man sincerely repents and is sorry for it, as David says in Psalm 32:5: "I said, I will confess my transgressions to the Lord: then thou didst forgive the guilt of my sin." We also read that when the prophet Nathan rebuked David for his sin and the latter thereupon declared, "I have sinned against the Lord," he was immediately absolved by Nathan, who replied, "The Lord has put away your sin" [II Sam. 12:13]. Even if God in many instances does not remove the punishment as promptly as he did with David, he nonetheless assures man of the remission of his sin. And if neither prophet nor priest were available, an angel would have to appear instead and announce, "Your sins are forgiven you," so that a sinner in his sorrow and punishment might not lose heart and despair. We observe also how during the Babylonian captivity God graciously and paternally consoles the people who confess their sins, enabling them to bear the punishment. Nor can the punishment endure forever; it must have its definite time, measure, and end wherever genuine contrition and repentance are found.

But there is no remission of sin for these Jews, no prophet to console them with the assurance of such forgiveness, no definite time limit for their punishment, but only interminable wrath and disfavor, devoid of any mercy. So it is not only an unmitigated lie but also an impossibility to understand Gabriel's promises in terms of their repentance, much less of their merit and righteousness.

But why should we waste so many words and so much time! The land of Canaan was hardly as big as a beggar's alms or as a crust of bread in comparison with the empire of the whole world. Yet they did not merit even this land through their repentance, or righteousness. Thus Moses declares in Deuteronomy 9:4 that they were not granted the possession of the land because of their righteousness, but it was given to them, a stiff-necked and disobedient people, that is, very sinful and unworthy people, solely by reason of God's gracious promise, although Hosea [Hos. 11:1 ff.] and Balaam (Numbers 24:5) praise them for being at their peak of piety at that time. They still had Moses, Aaron, the divine worship, prophets, God himself with his miracles, bread from heaven, water from the rock, clouds by day, pillars of fire by night, indestructible shoes and garments, etc. And these dreary dregs, this stinking scum, this dried-up froth, this moldy leaven and boggy morass of Jewry should merit, on the strength of their repentance and righteousness, the empires of the whole world_ that is, the Messiah and the fulfillment of the prophecies_though they possess none of the aforementioned items and are nothing but rotten, stinking, rejected dregs of their fathers' lineage!

In brief, Moses and all true Israelites understood these verses regarding the Messiah [as signifying that all this would be given them] out of sheer grace and mercy and not because of penitence and merit. This we gathered from the cited verses of Jacob, David, and Haggai. Likewise Daniel does not ask, desire, or think that such a glorious promise of the seventy weeks should be revealed to him, but it is granted him out of grace, far, far beyond his asking.

From this you can learn that fine repentance the Jews practiced, and still practice, after those seventy weeks. They began it with lies and blasphemies, in which they continued and still persist. Whoever wishes may imitate the Jews' example of repentance and say: "God and his angels are liars, they speak about things that are not." Then you will merit grace as they merit the Messiah.

If they weren't so stone-blind, their own vile external life would indeed convince them of the true nature of their penitence. For it abounds with witchcraft, conjuring signs, figures, and the tetragrammaton of the name, that is, with idolatry, envy, and conceit. Moreover, they are nothing but thieves and robbers who daily eat no morsel and wear no thread of clothing which they have not stolen and pilfered from us by means of their accursed usury. Thus they live from day to day, together with wife and child, by theft and robbery, as arch-thieves and robbers, in the most impenitent security. For a usurer is an arch-thief and a robber who should rightly be hanged on the gallows seven times higher than other thieves. Indeed, God should prophesy about such beautiful penitence and merit from heaven through his holy angel and become a flagrant, blasphemous liar for the sake of the noble blood and circumcised saints who boast of being hallowed by God's commandments, although they trample all of them under foot and do not keep one of them.

The passage in Daniel continues: "Know therefore and understand that from the time when the order goes forth to restore and build Jerusalem to the coming of the Messiah, the prince, there shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks. It shall be built again with streets and walls, but in a troubled time. And after the sixty-two weeks, the Messiah shall be killed, and shall have nothing" [Dan. 9:25 f.].
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Acts 8:26-39

ኮትኳች


Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 215

PostPosted: Thu Dec 08, 2005 1:17 am    Post subject: ክፍል 9 Reply with quote

ካለፈው የቀጠለ
ክፍል 9 -
On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543
Martin Luther (1483 - 1546)
Translated by Martin H. Bertram

Oh, how ridiculous it seems to these circumcised saints that we accursed Goyim have interpreted and understand this saying thus, especially since we did not consult their rabbis, Talmudists, and Kokhbaites whom they regard as more authoritative than all of Scripture- For they do a far better job of it. This is what they say: "Know therefore and understand from the going forth of the word to restore and rebuild Jerusalem" -- this means, Ponder and understand it well that the word has gone forth that Jerusalem is to be restored. That is one point. Further, "To the coming of the Messiah, the prince" -- this means, until the time of King Cyrus there shall be seven weeks." That is another point. Further, "For sixty-two weeks it shall be built again with walls and streets, but in a troubled time." That is another point. "And after sixty-two weeks the Messiah (that means King Agrippa) will be killed and will not be" -- this means, will be no king, etc.
It is indeed tiresome to discuss such confused lies and such tomfoolery. But I have to give our people occasion for pondering the devilish wantonness which the rabbis perpetrate with this splendid saying. So here you see how they separate the text where it should be read connectedly, and join it where it should be separated. This is the way in which it should be connected:

"Know therefore and understand that from the going forth of the word about how Jerusalem is to be restored and rebuilt to the coming of the Messiah, there shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks." These words, I say, are to be joined together to form one complete text. Then follows: "It shall be built again with walls and streets, but in a troubled time." This sentence, separate though it is, they connect with the foregoing words about the sixty-two weeks, so as to convey the meaning that the building of the walls and the streets will occupy sixty-two weeks.

That is truly a knavish trick. It reminds me of the rascal of whom I once heard as a young monk. He hacked the Lord's Prayer to pieces and re-arranged it to read thus: Our Father, hallowed be in heaven; thy name come; thy kingdom be done; thy will as in heaven, so also on earth. Or as that ignorant priest read the lesson in the Vigils from I Corinthians 15: *Ubi est mors stimulus, tuus stimulus autem mortis, peccatum est virtus vero,* etc.

That is the way the Jews tear apart the text wherever they can, solely for the purpose of spoiling the words of Scripture for us Christians, although it serves no purpose for them either. For it teaches them nothing, it does not comfort them, it gives them nothing; it results in nothing but meaningless words. It is the same as if the angel had said nothing at all. But they would rather surrender such comforting, joyous words and suffer the loss than to have them benefit us. Similarly, Bodenstein maliciously tore the words of the sacrament apart lest they prove useful to us. However, this will not help the rabbis, those night herons and screech owls. With the help of God we will bring their howling and lying to light. Let us take up the several parts in order.


Last edited by Acts 8:26-39 on Sun Dec 11, 2005 3:57 am; edited 1 time in total
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Acts 8:26-39

ኮትኳች


Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 215

PostPosted: Sun Dec 11, 2005 3:56 am    Post subject: ክፍል 9 - Reply with quote

ካለፈው የቀጠለ
ክፍል 9 -
On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543
Martin Luther (1483 - 1546)
Translated by Martin H. Bertram

First I want to ask the Hebraists whether the word *intellige* ["know"] is construed with the word *de* ["from"] in any other place in Scripture. I have not found any, and this seems to me quite arbitrary. If it is to mean *de* as in the phrase *de subjecta materia,* the Hebrew uses the preposition *al,* just as the Latins use the word *super* ("*Multa super Priamo,*" etc. [149]). I know very well, however, that the Jews cannot prove that such a construction obtains here. The biblical examples agree that it stands as an absolute, independently. But to ascribe something to God maliciously of which one is uncertain, and which one cannot prove, is tantamount to tempting him and giving him the lie.

Now let us see how they tear the text apart. "Know therefore and understand, from the going forth of the word, that Jerusalem will again be built." This, they claim, does not speak of the beginning of the seventy weeks but of the word that has gone forth. Then follows: "To the coming of the Messiah, the prince, there shall be seven weeks." Now it is in agreement with the customary usage of all languages that the word *donec,* "until" [or "to"], presupposes a beginning. However, the Jews assign it none; they refuse to have the text read "from the beginning of the word to the coming of Messiah." I must draw an analogy.

If some one on St. Gall Square here in Wittenberg were to tell you: "You have heard a sermon based on God's word, declaring that the church is holy. Ponder this and mark it well." All right, you look at him expectantly to hear what else he has to say; for he does have more to say. Then he abruptly blurts out: "There are still seven weeks till Michaelmas." Or, "It is a distance of three miles to Halle." Here you would look at him and say, What sense is there in that? Are you crazy? Are the seven weeks to begin now on the market-place? Or are the three miles to begin in Wittenberg? "No," he would reply, "you must understand this to mean from the Day of St. Lawrence to Michaelmas, and from Bitterfeld to Halle." At this point you would be tempted to rejoin: "Go plant a kiss of peace on a sow's rump! Where did you learn to jabber so foolishly? And what do the seven weeks have to do with your statement that I should note well the sermon that I heard at Wittenberg?"

The rabbis treat the angel Gabriel's words in the same way. They make his speech read thus: "There are seven weeks until the Messiah." Suppose now Daniel replies, "My dear Gabriel, what do you mean? Are the seven weeks to begin now that you are speaking with me?" "No," he says, "you must understand this to mean that they begin with the destruction of Jerusalem." Thank you, indeed, you noble, circumcised rabbis, for teaching the angel Gabriel to speak, as though he were unable to tell of the beginning of the seven weeks, which is all-important, as well as of the middle and the end of them. No, Daniel is to assume it. This is just nonsense. Shame on you, you vile rabbis, to attribute this foolish talk of yours to the angel of God! With this you disgrace yourselves and convict yourselves of being malicious liars and blasphemers of God's words. But this is just the grammatical side of the matter. Now let us study the theological aspect.
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Acts 8:26-39

ኮትኳች


Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 215

PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2005 12:44 am    Post subject: ክፍል 9 - Reply with quote

ካለፈው የቀጠለ
ክፍል 9 -
On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543
Martin Luther (1483 - 1546)
Translated by Martin H. Bertram


These holy, circumcised ravens say that the seventy weeks begin with the first destruction of Jerusalem and end with its second destruction. What better method could they have pursued for arriving at this conclusion than to close their eyes and ears, ignore Scripture and the history books, and let their imagination run freely, saying: "This is the way it seems right to us, and we insist upon it. Therefore it follows that God and his angel must agree with us. How could we be wrong? We are the ravens who are able to teach God and the angels."

Oh, what a base, vexatious, blasphemous people, that can merit the Messiah with such penitence! But let us listen to their wisdom. The seventy weeks begin with the destruction of Jerusalem by the king of Babylon; from that event until the coming of the Messiah, the prince (that is, King Cyrus), are seven weeks. Now tell me: Where is this written? Nowhere. Who has said it? Markolf the mockingbird. Who else might say or write it?

In the beginning of this ninth chapter stands Daniel's clear and plain statement that the revelation regarding the seventy weeks had come to him in the first year of the reign of Darius the Mede, who had conquered the Babylonian kingdom, which event had been preceded by the first destruction of Jerusalem seventy years earlier. For Daniel clearly states that seventy years of the devastation had been fulfilled, in accordance with Jeremiah 29:10. This we also read in II Chronicles, the last chapter [36:22]. And yet these two clear passages of Scripture, Daniel 9 and II Chronicles 36, must be accounted as lies by the rabbis. They insist that they are right and that the seventy weeks must have begun seventy years before they were revealed to Daniel. Isn't that great? Now go and believe the rabbis, those ignorant, untutored asses, who look neither at the Scriptures nor at the history books and who spew forth from their vicious mouth whatever they choose against God and angels.

For they herewith stand openly convicted of their lies and their erring arbitrariness. Since the seventy weeks which were revealed in the first year of the reign of Darius the Mede cannot begin seventy years previously with the destruction of Jerusalem, all their lies founded on this are simultaneously refuted, and this verse of Daniel regarding the seventy weeks must remain for us undefiled and unadulterated_no thanks to them. Eternal disgrace will be their reward for this impertinent and patent lie. With this lie another one also collapses; namely, their claim that the words about the Messiah, the prince, refer to King Cyrus, who supposedly appeared seven weeks after the destruction, although in fact he came ten weeks (that is, seventy years) after the destruction. This is recorded in II Chronicles 36, Daniel 9, and Ezra 1.

Even if we would assume which is impossible that the seventy weeks began with the destruction of Jerusalem, we could still not justify this stupid lie. And with this the third lie collapses. For they say that Cyrus came fifty-two years after the destruction: the equivalent of seven weeks and three years, or seven and a half weeks. Thus they tear three years, or half a week, from the sixty-two weeks and add them to the first seven weeks. It is as though the angel were such a consummate fool or child that he could not count up to seven, and says seven when he should say seven and a half. Why do they do this? So that we might perceive how they indulge in lies for the purpose of tearing apart and turning upside down God's word for us. Therefore they insist that Cyrus came seven and a half weeks (which they call seven weeks) after the destruction, whereas (as was said) he really came ten weeks, i.e., seventy years, later.

Nor does the angel tolerate that these weeks be mangled and mutilated, subtracting three years from one and leaving it only four years, and adding to the one that has seven years three more, making it ten years or one and a half weeks. For he says that the seventy weeks are to be taken exactly; they are counted and reckoned precisely.
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Acts 8:26-39

ኮትኳች


Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 215

PostPosted: Fri Dec 23, 2005 5:33 am    Post subject: ክፍል 9 - Reply with quote

ካለፈው የቀጠለ
ክፍል 9 -
On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543
Martin Luther (1483 - 1546)
Translated by Martin H. Bertram


Much less does he tolerate the fourth lie that Cyrus is here called the Messiah even if the other lies were to be upheld, to the effect that Cyrus had appeared after seven weeks, that is, after fifty-two years. For here we find the unmistakable and simple words of the angel: "Seventy weeks of years are decreed concerning your people and your holy city" [Dan. 9:24]. He means to say: In other chapters I spoke of strange people and kings; but in this verse concerning the seventy weeks I am speaking of your people, of your city, and of your Messiah. And whoever refers this to a different people and to different kings is a wanton, incorrigible liar.

The fourth lie is followed by the fifth, in which they divorce the seven weeks from the sixty-two. But these belong together, and there is no reason to separate them, especially since the lie regarding King Cyrus miscarried. It was for this reason that they severed the seven from the sixty-two weeks so that they could give him seven, that is, seven and a half. In biblical Hebrew it is customary to count the years thus: first to give the one, then the other number of years, but with both placed together. We find many illustrations for this in Genesis 5 and 11, where reference is made to the deceased fathers. For instance: "When Seth had lived five years and a hundred years, he became the father of Enosh. Seth lived after the birth of Enosh seven years and eight hundred years" [Gen. 5:6 f.]. Similarly Genesis 11 [:17]: "Eber lived after the birth of Peleg thirty years and four hundred years." And Genesis 25 [:7]: "Abraham lived one hundred years, seventy years, and five years." From these illustrations one can easily see how arbitrary it is to separate the seven years from the sixty-two years in this verse.

The Latin and German languages prevent such a disruption nicely, since they do not repeat the little word "year" so often, but read the number connectedly, saying: "Abraham lived one hundred seventy-five years." In that way these words also are to be taken: "From the going forth of the word to the coming of the Messiah, the prince, there are seven weeks and sixty-two weeks." These two numbers belong together and compose one number, to the coming of the Messiah. The angel has a reason for designating the entire sum of years as seven weeks and sixty-two weeks. He might have spoken of nine weeks and sixty weeks, or found many different ways to name such a sum, such as five weeks and sixty-four weeks, or six weeks and sixty-three weeks, etc. He must have the seven weeks for the construction of the walls and streets of Jerusalem; and he must have the sixty-two, up to the last week, which is all important, for in it the Messiah will die, fulfill the covenant, etc.

Then comes the sixth lie which says that the walls and streets of Jerusalem were rebuilt for sixty-two weeks (minus three years). That would be up to the last week, after which as they lie for the seventh time Jerusalem was again destroyed. For with the last week the seventy weeks are ended. According to this, Jerusalem had not stood again for longer than one week, which means seven years. Go ahead, Jew, lie boldly and unashamedly! Nehemiah stands against you with his book and testifies that he built the walls, set the gates, and arranged the city, and that he himself gloriously consecrated it. Thus the temple was already completed in the sixth year of the reign of Darius (Ezra 7 [6:16]). Alexander the Great found the city of Jerusalem already long completed. After him that villain Antiochus found the city even further restored and the temple full of wealth, and he plundered them horribly.

The eighth rude lie follows when they interpret the words of the angel, "And after sixty-two weeks the Messiah will be killed, and shall have nothing," as if the Messiah refers to King Agrippa, who was killed and had nothing after his death; no king succeeded him. Why would it not be just as true to say that Emperor Nero was the Messiah? He was killed at that time and left no heirs. I believe that they would designate Markolf or Thersites as the Messiah rather than accept the true Messiah. How can God, who loves the truth and who is the truth himself, tolerate such shameful, open lies if these are intolerable even to a person who is given to lies or is untruthful or is at least not so strict a lover of the truth? And this eighth lie is a multiple one_in the first place, because they assign different meanings to the word "Messiah" within such a brief passage: there he has to be Cyrus after the seven weeks, here Agrippa after the sixty-two weeks. Just as though the angel were a fool who would point to a different Messiah with every other word!
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Acts 8:26-39

ኮትኳች


Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 215

PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2006 4:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ካለፈው የቀጠለ
ክፍል 9 -
On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543
Martin Luther (1483 - 1546)
Translated by Martin H. Bertram


As we heard earlier, the angel is not referring to a foreign people and city, but says, "I am speaking of your people and of your city." Therefore we must conceive of the Messiah in this verse not as two different beings, but as one_namely, the Messiah of this people and of this city, the Shiloh of Judah who came after the scepter departed from Judah, the Son of David, the chemdath of Haggai. This verse indeed refers to him, excluding all others. For Agrippa was not king in Jerusalem, much less the Messiah, before the last week (that is, after seven and sixty-two weeks). The Romans had graciously granted him a little country beyond the Jordan. The Roman procurators such as Felix, Festus, Albinus, etc., ruled the land of Judea. Nor was Agrippa killed after the sixty-two weeks. In brief, all that they say is a lie.

Since they now confess, and have to confess, that a Messiah was killed after the sixty-two weeks, that is, in the first year of the last week, and since this cannot have been Agrippa (as they would like to have it, in confirmation of their lie), nor anyone else, I am curious to learn where they might find one. It must be someone who lived before the expiration of the seventy weeks and who was killed after sixty-two weeks. Furthermore, as Gabriel says, he must have come from among their people, undoubtedly from the royal tribe of Judah. Now it is certain that since Herod's time they had had no king who was a member of their people or race. But, on the other hand, it is just as certain that Gabriel must be believed, with his statement regarding a Messiah of their nation. How is this difficulty to be solved?

And there is more. They themselves confess that they had no Messiah, that is, no anointed king ("Messiah" means "the anointed one"), between the first and the last destruction of Jerusalem, for the sacred anointing oil, of which Moses writes in Exodus 30:22, with which kings and priests were anointed, no longer existed after the first destruction. Consequently, Zedekiah was the last anointed king; his descendants were princes, not kings, down to the time of Herod, when the scepter departed and Shiloh, the true Messiah, was to appear.

We want to purge out their lies completely. With reference to Daniel's saying, "And he shall make a strong covenant with many for one week" [Dan. 9 27], that is, the last week, they perpetrate the ninth lie, saying that the Romans agreed to a peace or a truce for this last week (or seven years) with the Jews; but since the Jews grew rebellious the Romans returned in three years and destroyed Jerusalem. Now how does this bear out Gabriel, who says that the peace or truce (as they interpret the word "covenant") is to last seven years? If it did not endure longer than three years, then Gabriel, who speaks of seven years or the last week must be lying. Thus the mendacious hearts of these incorrigible liars falsely impugn the truthfulness of the angel Gabriel. Alas, what truce? What peace? Read Josephus and the history books and you will learn that the Romans slew many thousands of Jews a long time before, and that there was no peace up to the time when they were constrained to destroy Jerusalem and the country.

The tenth and final lie concerns the assertion that the destruction of Jerusalem will last until the end of the strife. They interpret this as meaning: until the strife of their Messiah, who will kill Gog and Magog and conquer the whole world. This is a vicious, miserable lie which is dead before it is born. Let those who maintain that the Messiah appeared before the expiration of the seventy weeks be informed that such a lie was discredited as long as fifteen hundred years ago. Thus the Jews do not retain a single word of Gabriel's statement intact; they pervert all his words into lies, with the exception of the angel's prophecy regarding the destruction of Jerusalem. But no one need thank them for believing that and admitting the truth of it now. While they still inhabited Jerusalem, they believed this prophecy still less than they believe now in our Messiah, although it was foretold plainly enough, here in Daniel 9 as well as in Zechariah 14. If they were still dwelling in Jerusalem today, they would invent a hundred thousand lies before they would believe it, just as their ancestors did prior to the first destruction. The latter were not persuaded by any prophet that the holy city of God would be laid waste. They harried them, they raved like mad dogs until they stood face to face with the fulfillment of the prophecy. This has always been a stiff-necked, unbelieving, proud, base, incorrigible people, and so it ever remains.
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Acts 8:26-39

ኮትኳች


Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 215

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2006 1:53 am    Post subject: ክፍል 9 የቀጠለ Reply with quote

ካለፈው የቀጠለ
ክፍል 9 -
On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543
Martin Luther (1483 - 1546)
Translated by Martin H. Bertram


From all of this we gather that Daniel with his seventy weeks takes our position against the Jews' lies and folly, a position as reliable and firm as an iron wall and an immovable rock, affirming that the true Messiah must have come before the termination of the seventy weeks; that he was killed and made alive again; that he fulfilled God's covenant (for why should Daniel here be speaking of the Gentiles' covenant, which, moreover, did not even exist at the time?) in the last week; that he thereby took leave of the city and the people at the end of the seventy weeks; that the city was razed by the Romans shortly after; that the people were destroyed, with their government and all they had_all of this in accordance with the angel's words: "Seventy weeks of years are decreed or reckoned concerning your people and your holy city" [Dan. 9:24], But enough!

No doubt it is necessary for the Jews to lie and to misinterpret in order to maintain their error over against such a clear and powerful text. Their previous lies broke down under their own weight. But even if they were to lie for a hundred thousand years and call all the devils in to aid them, they would still come to nought. For it is impossible to name a Messiah at the time of the seventy weeks, as Gabriel's revelation would necessitate, other than our Lord Jesus Christ. We are certain, sure, and cheerful about this, as we snap our fingers at all the gates of hell and defy them, together with all the gates of the world and everything that wants to be or might be exalted, smart, and wise against us. I, a plain insignificant saint in Christ, venture to oppose all of them singlehandedly and to defend this viewpoint easily, comfortably, and gladly. However, it is impossible to convert the devil and his own, nor are we commanded to attempt this. [154] It suffices to uncover their lies and to reveal the truth. Whoever is not actuated to believe the truth for the sake of his own soul will surely not believe it for my sake.

We will limit ourselves for the time being to these four texts_ those of Jacob, David, Haggai, and Daniel_wherein we see what a fine job the Jews have done these fifteen hundred years with Scripture, and what a fine job they still do. For their treatment of these texts parallels their treatment of all others, especially those that are in favor of us and our Messiah. These, of course, must be accounted as lies, whereas they themselves cannot err or be mistaken. However, they have not acquired a perfect mastery of the art of lying; they lie so clumsily and ineptly that anyone who is just a little observant can easily detect it.

But for us Christians they stand as a terrifying example of God's wrath. As St. Paul declares in Romans 11, we must fear God and honor his word as long as the time of grace remains, so that we do not meet with a similar or worse fate. We have seen this happen in the case of the papacy and of Muhammad. The example of the Jews demonstrates clearly how easily the devil can mislead people, after they once have digressed from the proper understanding of Scripture, into such blindness and darkness that it can be readily grasped and perceived simply by natural reason, yes, even by irrational beasts. And yet they who daily teach and hear God's word do not recognize this darkness but regard it as the true light. O Lord God, have mercy on us!
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Acts 8:26-39

ኮትኳች


Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 215

PostPosted: Wed Feb 22, 2006 11:24 pm    Post subject: ክፍል 9 የቀጠለ Reply with quote

ካለፈው የቀጠለ
ክፍል 9 -
On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543
Martin Luther (1483 - 1546)
Translated by Martin H. Bertram


If I had to refute all he other articles of the Jewish faith, I should be obliged to write against them as much and for as long a time as they have used for inventing their lies -- that is, longer than two thousand years. I stated earlier that they corrupt their circumcision with human ordinances and ruin their heritage with their arrogance. In the same manner they also desecrate their Sabbath and- all their festivals. In brief, all their life and all their deeds, whether they eat, drink, sleep, wake, stand, walk dress, undress, fast, bathe, pray, or praise, are so sullied with rabbinical, foul ordinances and unbelief, that Moses can no longer be recognized among them. This corresponds to the situation of the papacy in our day, in which Christ and his word can hardly be recognized because of the great vermin of human ordinances. However let this suffice for the time being on their lies against doctrine or faith.

In conclusion we want to examine their lies against persons, which, after all, do not make the doctrine either worse or better, whether the persons are pious or base. Specifically, we want to look at their lies about the person of our Lord, as well as those about his dear mother and about ourselves and all Christians. These lies are such as the devil resorts to when he cannot assail the doctrine. Then he turns against the person_lying, maligning, cursing, and ranting against him. That is what the papists' Beelzebub [156] did to me. When he was unable to refute my gospel, he wrote that I was possessed of the devil, that I was a changeling, that my dear mother was a whore and a bathhouse attendant. [157] Of course, no sooner had he written this than my gospel was destroyed and the papists carried the day! Similarly, John the Baptist and Christ himself were charged with having a devil [Matt. 11:18; John 8:20] and were called Samaritans_and shortly thereafter John's and Christ's doctrine was shown to be false, and that of the Pharisees true. The same thing happened to all the prophets. Recently also, when the stealthy, murdering arsonist of Wolfenbuttell who, next to the archbishop of Mainz, is the holy Roman Church's one relic and jewel shamefully slandered and defamed the persons of the elector of Saxony and the landgrave of Hesse, both were instantly doomed; but he, the holy man, king over all kings, was crowned with a diadem and gold so heavy that he could not bear it and had to flee.

Therefore, whenever you wish to win in an evil cause, do as they do and as the glib babblers do in court when the silver- or gold-fever seizes them. Scold and lie boldly about the person, and your cause will win out. It is like the mother who instructed her child: "Dear son, if you cannot win otherwise, start a brawl." These are lies in which the liar does not fabricate or err in the chief question at issue (as happens also in religious disputes), but nevertheless is well aware that he is lying and wants to lie against the person. He does not dream of proving his point, either by appearances or by truth, and is unable to do so.

That is how the Jews, too, are acting in this instance. They blatantly inveigh and lie against and curse the person, against their own conscience. In that way they have long since won their case, so that God had to listen to them. Already for fifteen hundred years they have been sitting in Jerusalem, in a golden city, as we can clearly see. They are the lords of the world, and all the Gentiles flock to them with their chemdath, their coats, pants, and shoes, and permit themselves to be slain by the noble princes and lords of Israel, giving them land and people and all that they have, while the Jews curse, spit on, and malign the Goyim.

And you can well imagine that if they would not lie so outrageously, curse, defame, blaspheme, and revile the persons, God would not have heard them, and their cause would have been lost long ago; they would not be lords in Jerusalem today but live dispersed over the world, without seeing Jerusalem, and making their living among the accursed Goyim by means of lying, cheating, stealing, robbing, usury and all sorts of other vices. So effective is it to curse the person if the cause in question is evil and therefore doomed! Consequently, if you have a poor cause to defend, do not overlook this example of the Jews. They are the noble princes of Israel who are capable of everything. When their cause is lost, they still can curse the Goyim thoroughly.
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ግሸንማርያም

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Joined: 15 Aug 2005
Posts: 349
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2006 2:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

በስመ አብ በሰመ ወልድ በስመ ወመንፈስቅዱስ አሀዱ አምላክ አሜን ::

ወንድማችን አክት ስለ መልክቱ እግዚአብሄር ይስጥልን ::

ዛሬ ጊዜ አግኝቼ አምድክን ተመልክቼዋለሁ :: ብዙ አስተማሪ ነገሮችን አግኝቼበታለሁ ::

እውነትን ማውጣትክ በይበልጥ ይቀጥል ::

የሁሉ አማላጅ ቅድስት ድንግል ማርያም አገራችንን ትጠብቅልን አሜን ::
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Acts 8:26-39

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Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 215

PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2006 2:15 am    Post subject: ክፍል 10 Reply with quote

አሜን ብለናል ወንድም ግሽንማርያም :: ስለ መልካም አስትያየትህም እናመስግናለን ::
....................................................................
ካለፈው የቀጠለ
ክፍል 10 -
On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543
Martin Luther (1483 - 1546)
Translated by Martin H. Bertram


In the first place, they defame our Lord Jesus Christ, calling him a sorcerer and tool of the devil. This they do because they cannot deny his miracles. Thus they imitate their forefathers, who said, "He casts out demons by Beelzebub, the prince of demons" [Luke 11:15]. They invent many lies about the name of God, the tetragrammaton, saying that our Lord was able to define this name (which they call Schem Hamphoras), and whoever is able to do that, they say, is also able to perform all sorts of miracles. However, they cannot cite a single instance of any men who worked a miracle worth a gnat by means of this *Schem Hamphoras.* It is evident that as consummate liars they fabricate this about our Lord. For if such a rule of *Schem Hamphoras* were true, someone else would have employed it before or afterward. Otherwise, how could one know that such power inhered in the *Schem Hamphoras*? But this is too big a subject; after this booklet is finished, I plan to issue a special essay and relate what Porchetus writes on this subject. It serves them right that, rejecting the truth of God, they have to believe instead such abominable, stupid, inane lies, and that instead of the beautiful face of the divine word, they have to look into the devil's black, dark, lying behind, and worship his stench.
In addition they rob Jesus of the significance of his name, which in Hebrew means "savior" or "helper." The name Helfrich or Hilfrich was common among the old Saxons; this is the equivalent of the name Jesus. Today we might use the name Hulfrich -- that is, one who can and will help. But the Jews, in their malice, call him Jesu, which in Hebrew is neither a name nor a word but three letters, like ciphers or numeral letters. It is as if, for example, I were to take the three numeral letters C, L, and V as ciphers and form the word Clu. That is 155. In this manner they use the name Jesu, signifying 316. This number then is to denote another word, in which *Hebel Vorik* is found. For further information on their devilish practices with such numbers and words, you may read Anthony Margaritha.

When a Christian hears them utter the word "Jesu," as will happen occasionally when they are obliged to speak to us, he assumes that they are using the name Jesus. But in reality they have the numeral letters Jesu in mind, that is, the numeral 316 in the blasphemous word *Vorik.* And when they utter the word "Jesu" in their prayer, they spit on the ground three times in honor of our Lord and of all Christians, moved by their great love and devotion. But when they are conversing with one another they say, *Deleatur nomen eius,* which means in plain words, "May God exterminate his name," or "May all the devils take him."

They treat us Christians similarly in receiving us when we go to them. They pervert the words *Seid Gott willkommen* [literally, "Be welcome to God"] and say, *Sched wil kem!* which means: "Come, devil," or "There comes a devil." Since we are not conversant with the Hebrew, they can vent their wrath on us secretly. While we suppose that they are speaking kindly to us, they are calling down hellfire and every misfortune on our heads. Such splendid guests we poor, pious Christians are harboring in our country in the persons of the Jews, we who mean well with them, who would gladly serve their physical and spiritual welfare, and who suffer so many coarse wrongs from them.

...ይቀጥላል
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