Who was Sargon? And does it matter?

The name Sargon is mentioned in Isaiah chapter 20, verse 1 :

“In the year that Tartan came unto Ashdod, (when Sargon the king of Assyria sent him,) and fought against Ashdod, and took it;”
This was not only the sole reference to Sargon in the Bible, but the only reference to him anywhere!

Critics waxed eloquent in condemning the Bible for such a blunder of inventing an Assyrian monarch who never existed. Many are quick to find fault with the Bible but are extremely disappointed and disturbed when, time and time again, it is they who are proven wrong.

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Where The Waters Run… There is Life

“But understand this, that in the last days there will set in perilous times: of great stress and trouble – hard to deal with and hard to bear.” 2 Timothy 3:1 (Amplified Bible)

The explorer, Coulthard, who perished of thirst in the Australian desert, left behind at his last encampment, a few feebly scrawled lines:

“Lost, lost, for want of water.”

One aspect of the “perilous times” that the world is facing, in these the last days, is the problem of a worldwide shortage of water. Almost unnoticed, the problem has crept up on a planet distracted by fears of global warming, ozone depletion and other environmental threats. There simply is not enough water – and the story is repeated in country after country. From the slums of Mexico to the overburdened farms of China, not only is mankind outstripping limited fresh water stocks, but is also frequently polluting and poisoning the fluid that sustains all life.

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When You’re On A Sure Thing

In the Bible (1 Timothy 6:17) we are told not to trust in “uncertain riches” or as another translation puts it: “do not put your hope in the uncertain chances of wealth”. That is, we should not GAMBLE with our future.

The Encyclopedia Britannica defines GAMBLING as:

“The betting or staking of something of value, with consciousness of risk and hope of gain on the outcome of a game, a contest, or an uncertain event, the result of which may be determined by chance or accident or have an unexpected result by reason of the bettor’s miscalculation.”

Psychologists tell us that the real attraction of gambling lies in the thrills and tensions of uncertainty, the daring involved in taking chances, the challenge of testing one’s skill or luck, the satisfaction of beating an opponent (or perhaps the system or the bookies?) and the dreams of sudden good fortune and wealth.

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The Eyes Have It

The trilobite is a creature that has long been extinct, but gives marvellous testimony to the creative power of God, and demonstrates the foolishness of belief in evolution.

According to the World Book Encyclopedia, the trilobite was a prehistoric sea animal that lived between 600 million and 225 million years ago in all parts of the world. Trilobites were covered by a shell, and most of the species were under 10 cm long. Two grooves divided the animal’s shell lengthwise into three lobes (sections). The name trilobite means three lobes.

The eyes of the trilobite were the most remarkable feature about these animals. Scientists have been able to study the optics of the trilobite eyes. The lenses of our eyes are composed of living, organic tissues, so they rapidly decompose after death. The lenses of the trilobite eyes, however, were composed of inorganic, crystalline calcium carbonate, or calcite. Thus, the lenses of the trilobite eyes were still intact in the fossil remains recovered by the palaeontologists.

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The Birth of Christ

December 25th is not the birthday of Jesus the true Christ! The apostles and the early true Church never celebrated Christ’s birthday at any time. There is no command or instruction in the Bible to celebrate it. Indeed, Christmas is a pagan, rather than Christian custom.

Shepard attending sheep in the Holy LandWhen Jesus was born “there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night” (Luke 2:8) This could never have occurred in Palestine in the month of December. The shepherds always brought their flocks from the mountainsides and fields and corralled them not later than mid-October, to protect them from the cold, rainy seasons that followed that date.

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Risky Business!

“And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion” Genesis 1:26

What an incredible risk to create such a creature as man and to place him here on earth with authority over the rest of creation and with the liberty to make his own decisions, morally and spiritually!

The Garden of EdenIt was a risk God had to take. God has always desired to have fellowship with His created image, not through force, but through the bonds of love. As on that day in the cool of the evening there in the Garden of Eden when He called to Adam and Eve, so today He calls to each of us to come to Him and have fellowship with Him. God’s great risk in this matter is that He gave man a free will. He had to do this in order to make the desired relationship with Him meaningful. He allows us the opportunity and privilege of choosing to come to Him for fellowship through salvation and submission to His sovereignty or choosing to completely reject Him.

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It is finished

One of the significant achievements in the history of USA was the completion of the East West railway running from the Atlantic to the Pacific. It was completed in 1869 after considerable difficulty and personal sacrifice. A great ceremony was planned on the border of Colorado and New Mexico and a special golden spike was made for the occasion. At the appointed time the Governors of the two states involved hammered in the final spike made of gold, symbolizing the completion of the railway, uniting East with West. On the telegraph this simple message was sent: “IT IS FINISHED”

Over nineteen hundred years before that on another border (between heaven and hell), spikes were hammered into the hands and feet of Jesus Christ. They were not of gold but crude iron that tore the flesh. When these men had done their evil work there was a message that came forth….

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Go, Stand Speak

In the book of Acts, chapter 5, we read of the apostles being thrust into prison because of their commitment to the gospel.

“And by the hands of the apostles were many signs and wonders wrought among the people; (and they were all with one accord in Solomon’s porch … And believers were the more added to the Lord, multitudes both of men and women.) … Then the high priest rose up, and all they that were with him, (which is the sect of the Sadducees,) and were filled with indignation, And laid their hands on the apostles, and put them in the common prison.” (Acts 5:12,14,17,18)

The Bible then records that the angel of the Lord miraculously set them free. However, they were not to think that it was merely that they might save their lives by making their escape out of the hands of their enemies. Definitely not! It was that they might resume their labour of love with so much the more boldness.

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Excuses, excuses…

It seems to be a basic part of human nature to come up with all sorts of excuses to explain our inadequate and inappropriate behaviour. We are very quick to blame someone or something else for our mistakes.

The following are some of the unbelievable excuses given by drivers filling in their accident insurance claims:

“Coming home, I drove into the wrong house and collided with a tree I didn’t have.”
“He was all over the road and I had to swerve a number of times before I hit him.”
“In an attempt to kill a fly I drove into a telephone pole.”
“I had been driving my car for forty years when I fell asleep at the wheel.”
“The pedestrian had no idea which direction to go, so I ran over him.”
“I pulled away from the side of the road, glanced at my mother-in-law, and drove into the river.”

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Don’t Worry

In the words of Jesus, as quoted in Matthew 6:25 (Amplified Bible):

Stop being perpetually uneasy (anxious and worried) about your life…

A neurotic is a person who worries about something that didn’t happen in the past, instead of worrying about something that won’t happen in the future…like normal people!

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