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American Sniper

I’m spending my Saturday afternoon engaged in this work;it was recommended to me by neighbor who was a US Marine sniper in Vietnam. He doesn’t talk much about the war;therefore,I’m surprised he actually read this,albeit his military background has,once again,called him to duty.He is an avid reader and we have engaged in many literary dialogues.(Beaver County is full of badasses! They just don’t post on Facebook!)Obviously,this book has received a lot of attention.Anyways,I must say…the author appears to be highly xenophobic;I’m not injecting a diatribe on his character,just an observation.I’m in the infancy of his narrative;however,it is replete with sharp objectivity and devotion to his country and fighting unit.I actually know a few Navy Seals and one(former)Green Beret.I’ve always held an intense and HUGE fascination for Special Operations.That said,I often think of my father and uncles who have served and the “selection” of stories they shared. My late father told me HORROR stories of Hiroshima;he actually walked on that apocalyptic ground. He told me of the many 5 and 6 year old children he’d seen whose faces were so badly burned that “they made the elephant man look like a beauty queen!” (A real quote from my father! He NEVER got that story out of his head…). His brother was a survivor of Bastogne and the Battle of the Bulge;he will tell you stories that can make your hair fall out! My Uncle Bob was a Medic in Korea;he NEVER talked about it.All my father would tell me was that he saw MANY men bleed to death…and couldn’t do a thing to stop it! There was simply not enough Medics for everyone.My other Uncle Bob was a survivor of the “Tet Offensive” in Vietnam…do you know how many American soldiers were killed during this military operation? (Look it up!) The point is this: All these stories are fascinatingly subjective;each one is unique and solo. I mention these folks from my family only for ONE reason:they did not consider themselves heroes,just doing a job;my father always told me that the “REAL HEROES” were the ones who never made it home.I’m not certain where this SEAL is gong with his book;however,I sure wanna find out.I will close with this: WE are all so lucky to possess ALL the CHOICES we have;we have the CHOICE to worship ANY God we see fit,to read a BIBLE(King James,NIV,Gita,Koran,Book of Mormon,etc!)of our CHOICE,to SAY and WRITE what ails us,to SPIT on the VERY flag that those who died defending and not blink an eye! Show me a country where you can demonstrate this paradigm,without consequences(like getting your head cut off or thrown off of a building!Yes,I’m referring to my earlier post,but I”M NOT GAY! However,I defend EVERYONE’S RIGHT TO EXIST!)?Thank the God you have the RIGHT to worship that you reside in a country where this is granted;more importantly,thank those who gave FREELY to you (that you did not earn yourself)and have preserved that right…The United States has many graveyards of those Killed In Action.Put a flower on their grave,say thank-you! I do it every chance I get. downloadhttp://www.amazon.com/American-Sniper-Movie-Tie–Autobiography/dp/0062376330/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1421604752&sr=1-2&keywords=american+sniper

Reza Aslan

Reza Aslan

Reza Aslan is  completely disrespectful and IMMENSELY Anti-American. I do find it fascinating that these folks from the middle east get free education,get hired for teaching positions that they are not qualified for;they arrive in the position because they are foreigners(like Aslan),and access everything for free that all other Americans must earn! Yet,they HATE America and despise those who do not wish to embrace Islam! (But,they make their living here!!!) It is interesting to note that his family came here to escape the Iranian Revolution,hmmm. Even more ironic,he claims in his book,Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth,that Jesus was a revolutionary…isn’t that amazing??? (Which,by the way,was a bestseller! Why? Because if you write a book about what we actually know about Jesus,it is not interesting;however,if you “make-up” things about Jesus(like Reza Aslan and Dan Brown),the “uneducated and psychotic”public will run with it!)

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2015/01/08/reza_aslan_there_is_a_civil_war_taking_place_in_europe_france_tolerated_multiculturalism.html

Local Recognition!

Author Margo Simmons is an Aliquippa native like myself. I wish to share with all of you her debut novel,”Handicapped Dreams!” She is a woman of enormous talent;she is also a songwriter as well as an Iraqi war veteran. Please check out here work on Amazon:http://www.amazon.com/Handicapped-Dreams-Margo-Simmons/dp/1500383066/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1412530506&sr=1-1&keywords=handicapped+dreams

Author,Margo Simmons

Author,Margo Simmons

Dr.Craig Keener: the most voracious North American biblical scholar!

"The Death of Cleopatra" by Edmonia Lewis. (1867)

“The Death of Cleopatra” by Edmonia Lewis. (1867)

Edmonia Lewis was one of the first African-American woman to acquire fame as a sculptor. One can easily determine the reason for this when this piece examined. The Death of Cleopatra is a massive demonstration of refusing to release life;although Cleopatra seems content and serene,there is a haunting theme that is regulated by her posture that suggests her battle with death is just commencing. Her hands appear to be convenient auxiliaries of pulsating life;they are swollen and tempered with magnificent blood flow. Even more radiant are her breasts,which are erect and puffed,as if immensely desiring to be fondled,just to remind the ancient queen that life is worth living for. An epic battle is in place,but the queen will surrender her breath to death;she will sing in silence for eternity. The dramatic moment has been captured beautifully. 

Ms.Lewis was quite famous during her lifetime;she sculpted a bust of Ulysses S. Grant and met Civil War Colonel Robert Gould Shaw(commander of the 54th Massachusetts who was killed in action).  She also made a substantial amount of money from her pieces,some as much as $50,000 dollars! (That’s quite a lot for a woman of her time and stature.) This is a remarkable example of her talent as an artist. What a grand example of unblemished marble that has captured a fascinating woman from the Golden Age of the Ancient World…

(This piece resides at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington,D.C.).

 

The Battle of Gettysburg inhaled the largest amount of casualties of any battle in the Civil War with a little over 51,000. It also produced 63 Medals of Honor. (That is an unprecedented statistic!) Today,on July 3rd,2014,I pay homage to a few of the fallen soldiers who sacrificed their lives and spirit in pursuit of the noblest of truths,patriotism. May we NEVER forget their bravery. (These photos are courtesy of the Heinz History of Pittsburgh,Pa.) Gentlemen,I am unable to write any words that can express my appreciation for your valor. Thank-you… 

Under the command of Colonel Francis Mahler, the predominately German-American 75th Pennsylvania fought off Confederates north of town. After a halting advance through fenced farm fields, the regiment reached a wheat field and charged toward enemy troops. Mahler’s horse was killed, leaving the colonel on foot to direct fire toward the approaching Confederates. As the rebels enveloped his men, Mahler was shot, dying from his wounds four days later.

Under the command of Colonel Francis Mahler, the predominately German-American 75th Pennsylvania fought off Confederates north of town. After a halting advance through fenced farm fields, the regiment reached a wheat field and charged toward enemy troops. Mahler’s horse was killed, leaving the colonel on foot to direct fire toward the approaching Confederates. As the rebels enveloped his men, Mahler was shot, dying from his wounds four days later.

After relieving Hooker of his command, the president offered the position to Major General John Reynolds. Knowing the Commander-in-Chief often took a role in army affairs, Reynolds answered that he would take the post if there would be no executive interference. When Lincoln could give no such guarantee, Reynolds turned down the commission, which went to George Gordon Meade. Tactical placement of the 1st Corps was left to Reynolds. As his men encountered advancing Confederates, Reynolds was shot in the back of the head. He was dead before his men could ease him down from the saddle. Reynolds was buried in Lancaster on July 4, 1863.

After relieving Hooker of his command, the president offered the position to Major General John Reynolds. Knowing the Commander-in-Chief often took a role in army affairs, Reynolds answered that he would take the post if there would be no executive interference. When Lincoln could give no such guarantee, Reynolds turned down the commission, which went to George Gordon Meade. Tactical placement of the 1st Corps was left to Reynolds. As his men encountered advancing Confederates, Reynolds was shot in the back of the head. He was dead before his men could ease him down from the saddle. Reynolds was buried in Lancaster on July 4, 1863.

Captain Alfred Sofield and his men of the 149th Pennsylvania found themselves in the crossfire of rebel infantry and artillery. As they took cover in a ditch by the Chambers- burg Road, an artillery shell landed under the captain, and, by one account, “literally cut him in two, leaving his heels in contact with his head.”

Captain Alfred Sofield and his men of the 149th Pennsylvania found themselves in the crossfire of rebel infantry and artillery. As they took cover in a ditch by the Chambers- burg Road, an artillery shell landed under the captain, and, by one account, “literally cut him in two, leaving his heels in contact with his head.”

Colonel Strong Vincent took initiative and directed his brigade up the slope of Little Round Top to defend the hill against the on- slaught of Law’s Brigade. The colonel climbed onto a boulder and cried out, “Don’t give an inch!” but a bullet struck Vincent, breaking his right thigh bone. As the colonel was carried from the field, reinforcements arrived and Little Round Top was saved; however, Vincent fell in and out of consciousness over the next five days, and then succumbed to his wound. His pregnant widow, Elizabeth Carter Vincent, gave birth to their baby girl two months later, but she would lose daughter Blanche Strong Vincent nine days before the child’s first birthday.

Colonel Strong Vincent took initiative and directed his brigade up the slope of Little Round Top to defend the hill against the on- slaught of Law’s Brigade. The colonel climbed onto a boulder and cried out, “Don’t give an inch!” but a bullet struck Vincent, breaking his right thigh bone. As the colonel was carried from the field, reinforcements arrived and Little Round Top was saved; however, Vincent fell in and out of consciousness over the next five days, and then succumbed to his wound. His pregnant widow, Elizabeth Carter Vincent, gave birth to their baby girl two months later, but she would lose daughter Blanche Strong Vincent nine days before the child’s first birthday.

General Samuel Kosciuszko Zook recovered from a wound sustained at the Battle of Fredericksburg and returned to his brigade’s command to fight at Gettysburg. At the Wheatfield, when Zook rushed his men to shore up an exposed flank of the 3rd Corps, he was felled by a bullet to the abdomen. He died painfully in a rudimentary field hospital.

General Samuel Kosciuszko Zook recovered from a wound sustained at the Battle of Fredericksburg and returned to his brigade’s command to fight at Gettysburg. At the Wheatfield, when Zook rushed his men to shore up an exposed flank of the 3rd Corps, he was felled by a bullet to the abdomen. He died painfully in a rudimentary field hospital.

Color Sergeant Benjamin Crippen of the 143rd Pennsylvania stopped several times to shake his fist in defiance, even as his outflanked regiment gave up ground to the oncoming enemy. An easy target, the six-foot-one flag bearer was felled by his pursuers. Although the state colors were recovered, Crippen’s body was not. Crippen’s likeness in stone, clenched fist raised, now stands on the battlefield as the regimental marker of the 143rd.

Color Sergeant Benjamin Crippen of the 143rd Pennsylvania stopped several times to shake his fist in defiance, even as his outflanked regiment gave up ground to the oncoming enemy. An easy target, the six-foot-one flag bearer was felled by his pursuers. Although the state colors were recovered, Crippen’s body was not. Crippen’s likeness in stone, clenched fist raised, now stands on the battlefield as the regimental marker of the 143rd.


First off,NEVER go to a Hollywood director for Biblical authenticity! This entire documentary,directed by james Cameron,is grossly inaccurate;however,I will deal with,what I feel,is a major flaw in this production. Simcha Jacobovici is a prominent Israeli filmmaker(who narrates this production) who,I assume,is fluent in Hebrew(although one wonders how he is capable of this egregious error in linguistics).

Here is the example of my contention:

 

Jacobovici places the Exodus from Egypt at 1500 BC;however,the pharaoh believed to be ruling at the time,Ahmose(according to the update archeology),actually ruled more earlier,1550-1525 BC;he never addresses this and simply moves his reign ahead to fit his theory! (Just an honest mistake,I guess…complete with no EVIDENCE or SUPPORT for this claim!)

 

Here is the clincher: The Hebrew word for “brother” is “Ah”( אח). The word “Mose”,in Hebrew( מֹשֶׁה)is Moses.Somehow(without ANY linguistic explanation),Jacobovici argues that the word “Ahmose” means “brother of Moses”. Linguistically,you cannot draw such a conclusion!(I learned these “tricks”from “Rabbi Shalom Bell” in the Jewish synagogue in Ambridge during my Hebrew studies with him in my college years.) Egyptian Hieroglyphics,when translated correctly,would have the name of this pharaoh read as follows,”Yahmes”;”Ahmoses” is clearly a Semantic error! “Yahmes” has no Hebrew equivalent. However,in ancient Hebrew,”Ah Mose” means born of “iah”,or “iah” is born.(Iah was an ancient Egyptian lunar deity.)The syllable “Ah” in “Ahmose” is theophoric for the deity “Iah”. (You with me so far?) This is a commonality in Egyptian Hieroglyphics. Consequently,the name “Moses”, is the English equivalent of the Greek Septuagint variant(Μωυσῆς)of the traditional Hebrew spelling of “Mosheh”! As I have demonstrated,Semantics and Linguistics can certainly turn subjects on their heads. With this contention,I am NOT asserting that the Hebrew Exodus did not take place;I am demonstrating that the dating and placing of events simply have been altered by this horrid production. Study your Bible,folks!

  

Happy Birthday to Mr. William Shakespeare(April 23,1564-April 23,1616.) Your contribution to the English language is unsurpassed and shall shine for eternity!
(A “few” of my favorite lines…)
“The course of true love never did run smooth.” (A Midsummer Night’s Dream:Act 1,Scene 1)

“Hell is empty and all the devils are here.” (The Tempest:Act 1,Scene 2)

“Sonnet 30″
When to the sessions of sweet silent thought
I summon up remembrance of things past,
I sigh the lack of many a thing I sought,
And with old woes new wail my dear time’s waste:
Then can I drown an eye, unus’d to flow,
For precious friends hid in death’s dateless night,
And weep afresh love’s long since cancell’d woe,
And moan the expense of many a vanish’d sight:
Then can I grieve at grievances foregone,
And heavily from woe to woe tell o’er
The sad account of fore-bemoaned moan,
Which I new pay as if not paid before.
But if the while I think on thee, dear friend,
All losses are restor’d and sorrows end.

“Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt.” (Measure for Measure:Act 1,Scene 4)

“God has given you one face and you make yourselves another.” (Hamlet:Act3,Scene1)

“But, soft! what light through yonder window breaks?
It is the east, and Juliet is the sun.
Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon,
Who is already sick and pale with grief,
That thou her maid art far more fair than she:
Be not her maid, since she is envious;
Her vestal livery is but sick and green
And none but fools do wear it; cast it off.
It is my lady, O, it is my love!
O, that she knew she were!
She speaks yet she says nothing: what of that?
Her eye discourses; I will answer it.
I am too bold, ’tis not to me she speaks:
Two of the fairest stars in all the heaven,
Having some business, do entreat her eyes
To twinkle in their spheres till they return.
What if her eyes were there, they in her head?
The brightness of her cheek would shame those stars,
As daylight doth a lamp; her eyes in heaven
Would through the airy region stream so bright
That birds would sing and think it were not night.
See, how she leans her cheek upon her hand!
O, that I were a glove upon that hand,
That I might touch that cheek!” (Romeo and Juliet:Act2,Scene2)

“There’s place and means for every man alive.” (All’s Well That Ends Well:Act4,Scene3)

“Look like the innocent flower, but be the serpent under ‘t.” (Macbeth:Act I, Scene 5)

Shakespeare

Did Jesus really rise from the dead? Is there evidence for this? Is the testimony of Saint Paul reliable? Is their evidence “OUTSIDE” the New Testament for the Resurrection? Do you believe or disbelieve in the Resurrection? What is your evidence? What methodology should we use to interpret and understand ancient historical documents? How do you download and process your own doubt? Why do I ask this? It is critical to your thinking process! Once again,Dr.Habermas delivers his infamous lecture on this critical subject of apologetics! (This is the most updated version I have come in contact with.)

“Passover”

I wish to extend to ALL of my Jewish brothers and sisters a BLESSED Passover Holiday…please pray for the PEACE and PRESERVATION of Israel. (Passover commences this evening at sundown.)

5 “בַּחֹ֣דֶשׁ הָרִאשֹׁ֗ון בְּאַרְבָּעָ֥ה עָשָׂ֛ר לַחֹ֖דֶשׁ בֵּ֣ין הָעַרְבָּ֑יִם פֶּ֖סַח לַיהוָֽה׃

6 וּבַחֲמִשָּׁ֨ה עָשָׂ֥ר יֹום֙ לַחֹ֣דֶשׁ הַזֶּ֔ה חַ֥ג הַמַּצֹּ֖ות לַיהוָ֑ה שִׁבְעַ֥ת יָמִ֖ים מַצֹּ֥ות תֹּאכֵֽלוּ׃

7 בַּיֹּום֙ הָֽרִאשֹׁ֔ון מִקְרָא־קֹ֖דֶשׁ יִהְיֶ֣ה לָכֶ֑ם כָּל־מְלֶ֥אכֶת עֲבֹדָ֖ה לֹ֥א תַעֲשֽׂוּ׃

8 וְהִקְרַבְתֶּ֥ם אִשֶּׁ֛ה לַיהוָ֖ה שִׁבְעַ֣ת יָמִ֑ים בַּיֹּ֤ום הַשְּׁבִיעִי֙ מִקְרָא־קֹ֔דֶשׁ כָּל־מְלֶ֥אכֶת עֲבֹדָ֖ה לֹ֥א תַעֲשֽׂוּ׃

5 In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month, at twilight, there shall be a passover offering to the Lord, 6 and on the fifteenth day of the same month is the festival of unleavened bread to the Lord; seven days you shall eat unleavened bread. 7 On the first day you shall have a holy convocation; you shall not work at your occupations. 8 For seven days you shall present the Lord’s offerings by fire; on the seventh day there shall be a holy convocation: you shall not work at your occupations.”
(Leviticus 23: 5-8,NRSV)

"Passover" by Palma il Giovane,circa,1581.)

“Passover” by Palma il Giovane,circa,1581.)

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