Monday, January 13, 2014

Gifts of Mercy

   “So he (Jesus) summoned his 12 disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, in order to expel these and to cure every sort of disease and every sort of infirmity.  The names of the 12 apostles are these: First, Simon, the one called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee and John his brother; Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus; Thaddaeus; Simon the Cananaean; and Judas Iscariot, who later betrayed him.” (Matthew 10:1-4)  

   This shows that Judas Iscariot was given the privilege of performing miracle healing along with the rest of the 12.  It did not stop him from betraying Jesus.  The theory that his ultimate motivation for betraying Jesus was to get the Jews to struggle for political freedom from the Romans does not fit this account.  He could have used the healing power to help his people which would set the Jews above the Romans in terms of healthcare at a time when plagues are common due to poor medical information and treatment.  Judas was not punished for his betrayal.  He suffered from his own hands.

   “I have concluded that there is nothing better for them than to rejoice and to do good during their life, also that everyone should eat and drink and find enjoyment for all his hard work. It is the gift of God.” (Ecclesiastes 3:12-13)

   King Solomon, the man of wisdom, wrote the above verses which prove that God never meant for man to deprive himself, or hurt himself, not even for his worship.  Like a loving parent who would not wish ill on the children he wants “nothing better” than for man to enjoy the fruits of his labor. 

   “And now you are cursed in banishment from the ground that has opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand.  When you cultivate the ground, it will not give you back its produce.  You will become a wanderer and a fugitive in the earth.” At this Cain said to Jehovah: “The punishment for my error is too great to bear.” (Genesis 4:11-13)

   Cain was banished without even a cut or blow and he said his punishment was too great.  He had no remorse for what he has done.  Abel is dead, a young life cut short that could have reached 900 years.  Imagine how much Cain has taken from Abel.  In modern times banishment is like deportation.  He would still have the freedom to roam and live a normal life with an added mark that no one should kill him.  That would be in this day and age a high end security service against mugging, murder, molestation, break in, etc.  God loved Abel but in his mercy still did not give Cain capital punishment nor jail nor wished him endangerment.  Why should anyone prefer another God?

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