"So Let it Be Written... So Let it Be Done"

The life and times of a real, down to earth, nice guy. A relocated New Englander formerly living somewhere north of Boston, but now soaking up the bright sun of southwestern central Florida (aka The Gulf Coast). Welcome to my blog world. Please leave it as clean as it was before you came. Thanks for visiting, BTW please leave a relevant comment so I know you were here. No blog spam, please. (c) MMV-MMXV Court Jester Productions & Bamford Communications

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Wonderful weekend weather

This had to be the best weather weekend of the year, so far. Both days were virtually cloudless and warm with a gentle breeze blowing. Spring in southern New Hampshire (or New England for that matter) doesn't get much better than this, let me tell you.

On Saturday, my kids and I went to my parents house. In between loads of laundry, we went to my old elementary school so that they could enjoy the fresh air and play on the playground. Surprisingly, we were the only ones there for most of the hour and a half or so that we were there. I took a whiffle bat and two balls out of my van (the beast) and hit the balls to them fungo-style. They got to run around chasing them and throwing them back to me. I showed M how to hold and swing the bat and stand in the batters' box. I pitched a few balls to him and he still swung awkwardly - but he did manage to hit a few. I tried to show V how to hold the bat too but it was a bit more difficult for me to teach her because she is left-handed and I am not. She ended up getting frustrated with it as she normally does when learning something new.

V and M love the movie Chronicles of Narnia. Knowing that I have the whole series of books in my library and that the recent movie is book two in the series, they asked me to read to them the first book, which is called The Magician's Nephew. Two chapters down and thirteen to go...

Today, after church, we went to my favorite evil empire, Wal-Mart, so I could buy a couple of booster car seats for the kids and some transmission fluid for the beast. So V and M played outside while I did a little bit of work on the beast. I washed the inside of the windows and added some washer fluid and transmission fluid stuff to my engine that is supposed to help stop the leak, which the beast has developed recently. I also cleaned the battery posts, which were all corroded.

Later, the ex called with a voice that sounded like she swallowed a frog or three. She called out of work tonight, sick, which means that she won't be picking up the kids tomorrow morning for school. So I could either bring them to her house tonight or tomorrow morning, my choice. After weighing the options, I decided to bring them back this evening, so that they could sleep a bit later in the morning instead of getting up even earlier than normal so that I could take them to school AND get myself to work at a decent hour in the morning. When we got there, ex looked horrible, obviously worn down from the flu or whatever it is she's got. I just hope V and M don't get it, or give it to me next weekend.

I can't believe tomorrow is May first.... already.

Saturday, April 29, 2006

SNMR 1.7: "The Skeleton Key"

Tonight's SNMR feature is "The Skeleton Key" (2005, PG-13, 104 minutes) starring Kate Hudson, Gena Rowlands, Peter Sarsgaard, Joy Bryant and John Hurt. The film was directed by Iain Softley.

This is another in a long line of DVD's that I bought when it came out several months ago and hadn't gotten around to watching it at all until tonight. I bought it primarily because the box looked interesting and partly because I've enjoyed other movies Kate Hudson has been in.

From the DVD's dust jacket:

"Kate Hudson stars in The Skeleton Key - a supernatural thriller that weaves a tale of terror and suspense! When Caroline Ellis (Hudson) takes a job in Louisiana's bayous, she unlocks a deadly secret involving magic, conjure, and sacrifice that pulls her into a terrifying world of strange, frightening and unexplained incidents. The key to escaping may lie in a decrepit attic, but if she dares to believe in what she discovers, everything she fears will become real! Filled with endless suspense and bone-chilling scares, hold on for this terrific ride with 'one of the best twists since The Sixth Sense' (Melanie Moon, WB-TV)!


Here we have a delightful little spook movie that is good enough to keep you on the edge of your seat. The film runs along at a good pace and doesn't drag in many areas. The writing is decent but no real memorable quotes stick out. Kate Hudson is good in the lead role and the supporting cast is believeable. I didn't think the twist ending was as shocking as in The Sixth Sense, but it worked for me because it's not an ending that I was expecting. Overall, I'm not a huge fan of this genre of film (I don't scare easily) but I did enjoy this one. Because no horror/suspense movie is perfect, I'll give this film 3 1/2 out of 5 stars.

Friday, April 28, 2006

2006 NFL Draft contest

I don't play fantasy football and I don't really follow college football all that much. But for reasons I don't quite understand, I always follow the NFL draft. I like to see particularly, which players the Patriots will draft. Especially in an offseason where they've lost more than they've gained. Bill Belichick, the Patriots coach, is not shy about trading picks and moving around in the draft to get players that fit the Patriots style of play.

Every year, Patriots Football Weekly holds an NFL Draft contest. What you have to do is guess the order of who will be picked when in the first round of the draft, with each player worth a noumber of points equal to the draft slot. For example, the first pick is worth one point, the tenth pick is worth ten points, etc. Below is my pick of how I think the first round will go.

As I was looking on ESPN.com tonight, I read that Mario Williams has already agreed to a contract with the Houston Texans, who had the top pick in tomorrow's draft. Great. My guesses are already messed up and the draft doesn't officially begin until noon tomorrow.

Update: After all of my hard work, I only ended up getting one pick right, which was #3 Vince Young. So I'll not be winning this contest THIS year.

1 Bush, Reggie
2 Ferguson, D'Brickashaw
3 Young, Vince
4 Leinart, Matt
5 Williams, Mario
6 Hawk, A.J.
7 Hali, Tamba
8 Ngata, Haloti
9 Justice, Winston
10 Cutler, Jay
11 Huff, Michael
12 Greenway, Chad
13 Jean-Gilles, Max
14 Kiwanuka, Mathias
15 Holmes, Santonio
16 Williams, Jimmy
17 Ryans, DeMeco
18 Jackson, Chad
19 Hill, Tye
20 Watson, Gabe
21 Carpenter, Bobby
22 Davis, Vernon
23 McNeill, Marcus
24 Bing, Darnell
25 Youboty, Ashton
26 Howard, Thomas
27 White, LenDale
28 Pope, Leonard
29 Maroney, Laurence
30 Williams, DeAngelo
31 Tapp, Darryl
32 Wright, Rodrique
Bonus Pats Pick: Carpenter, Bobby

I was one of five winners in this contest in 1999 and actually won the grand prize of this whole contest that same year. I was competing against four other draft contest winner contestants, the members of the newspaper staff and a penny (coin flip, you know.) For reaching the top five (in which my name was pulled out of a hat to break a tie for the fifth spot) I won a Patriots pull-over jacket, which I still have and wear. The second contest, was a weekly picks contest where you had to guess the winner of the games played each week. At the end of the season, the person with the best overall record won the grand prize, which was a pair of season tickets for the 2000 season. Unfortunately for me, the seats were lousy, in old Foxboro Stadium AND the Patriots went 5-11 in 2000. I sat through some truly horrible games but had fun being part of the crowd. The Patriots won the Super Bowl for the first time the next season, in 2001 (game played Feb. 3, 2002) against the St. Louis Rams (XXXVI.)

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Interesting "facts"

My grandmother is very helpful in providing me with some fun things I can post when I'm not readily available. So without delay, some interesting "facts":


In the 1400's a law was set forth in England that a man was allowed to beat his wife with a stick no thicker than his thumb. Hence we have "the rule of thumb"
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Many years ago in Scotland, a new game was invented. It was ruled "Gentlemen Only...Ladies Forbidden"...and thus the word GOLF entered into the English language.
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The first couple to be shown in bed together on prime time TV were Fred and Wilma Flintstone.
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Every day more money is printed for Monopoly than the U.S.Treasury.
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Men can read smaller print than women can; women can hear better.
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Coca-Cola was originally green.
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It is impossible to lick your elbow.
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The State with the highest percentage of people who walk to work: Alaska
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The percentage of Africa that is wilderness: 28% (now get this...)
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The percentage of North America that is wilderness: 38%

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The cost of raising a medium-size dog to the age of eleven: $6,400
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The average number of people airborne over the U.S. in any given hour: 61,000
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Intelligent people have more zinc and copper in their hair.
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The first novel ever written on a typewriter: Tom Sawyer.
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The San Francisco Cable cars are the only mobile National Monuments.
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Each king in a deck of playing cards represents a great king from history:
Spades - King David
Hearts - Charlemagne
Clubs -Alexander, the Great
Diamonds - Julius Caesar
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111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321
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If a statue in the park of a person on a horse has both front legs in the air, the person died in battle. If the horse has one front leg in the air the person died as a result of wounds received in battle. If the horse has all four legs on the ground, the person died of natural causes.
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Only two people signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4th, John Hancock and Charles Thomson. Most of the rest signed on August 2, but the last signature wasn't added until 5 years later.
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Q. Half of all Americans live within 50 miles of what?
A. Their birthplace
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Q. Most boat owners name their boats. What is the most popular boat name requested?
A. Obsession
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Q. If you were to spell out numbers, how far would you have to go until you would find the letter "A"?
A. One thousand
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Q. What do bulletproof vests, fire escapes, windshield wipers, and laser printers all have in common?
A. All were invented by women.
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Q. What is the only food that doesn't spoil?

A. Honey
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Q. Which day are there more collect calls than any other day of the year?
A. Father's Day
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In Shakespeare's time, mattresses were secured on bed frames by ropes. When you pulled on the ropes the mattress tightened, making the bed firmer to sleep on. Hence the phrase......... "goodnight, sleep tight."
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It was the accepted practice in Babylon 4,000 years ago that for a month after the wedding, the bride's father would supply his son-in-law with all the mead he could drink. Mead is a honey beer and because their calendar was lunar based, this period was called the honey month, which we know today as the honeymoon.
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In English pubs, ale is ordered by pints and quarts... So in old England, when customers got unruly, the bartender would yell at them "Mind your pints and quarts, and settle down."
It's where we get the phrase "mind your P's and Q's"
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Many years ago in England, pub frequenters had a whistle baked into the rim, or handle, of their ceramic cups. When they needed a refill, they used the whistle to get some service. "Wet your whistle" is the phrase inspired by this practice.
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~~~~~~~~~~~AND FINALLY~~~~~~~~~~~~
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At least 75% of people who read this will try to lick their elbow!
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Believe it or not, you can read this. Give it a try!

I cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg. The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid aoccdrnig to rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoatnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.

Amzanig huh?

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Important work I'm doing

but very delicate work, indeed. The last two nights I've been attempting to cheer up a friend who is depressed. Hopefully my "words of wisdom" are helping. I'd like to think so, but only she knows for sure.

Anyway my friend, if you read this, I want you to know that I enjoy chatting with you very much. You are certainly worth my time and effort and as long as I consider you my friend it will always be that way. And if you know how hard it is to get rid of me as a friend then you will know that I mean it sincerely.

Have a good night, my friend. I will talk/email you tomorrow to see how you are doing.

Alias 5.12: There's Only One Sydney Bristow

From ABC.com:

"In the milestone 100th episode of the award-winning spy drama, Sydney's maternity leave is cut short when she learns that Will has been abducted by her nemesis, Anna Espinosa. Meanwhile, Sloane finds himself one step closer to obtaining the cure for daughter Nadia."

In more detail:

Sloane meets with the Prophet Five leaders in Minsk. In return for Nadia's full recovery, they force him to make Sydney go on a mission. He agrees on the condition that Sydney will not be hurt.

Peyton, who survived Jack's assault in Vancouver, springs Anna Espinosa in return for Anna's help. Later, Anna poses as a witness protection agent to gain entry into Will Tippin's home and tasers him.

At APO, Sloane and Jack show Sydney a video surveillance clip of Will's abduction, and mention that Anna had internal assistance from Prophet Five. Although Sloane "urges" her to stay on leave, she's determined to save Will.

In a hidden location, Peyton's accomplice Burris injects a bomb into Will's neck. Meanwhile, Sloane tells Sydney that Ecehelon has intercepted a call between Yerik Semanko and Anna regarding an exchange at a Moscow club run by the Russian mafia. Sydney leaves her baby with babysitting agents.

In Moscow, Dixon, Rachel and Tom enter the club with Marshall's help. Sydney accesses the club through the roof. Once in the club, the team dons eyeglasses that broadcast x-ray images to Marshall, enabling him to spot guns and money. Later, Rachel flirts with Semanko while Sydney skillfully plants a bug on his collar. As he goes into the VIP room and meets Anna, the APO team overhears that Will is in Room 147.

Syd heads toward Will and confronts Anna. Peyton watches the fight through video surveillance. Anna knifes Syd's arm - and the camera scans Syd, capturing data. Will helps Syd chase off Anna.

In the APO office, Sydney tells Jack that she hated telling Will that Vaughn was dead. Jack reminds her that Vaughn's safety depends on hiding him. When Will visits Syd, an alarm notifies the babysitters. Later, they discover the bomb in Will's head. Suddenly, Syd gets a call from Anna.

Anna asks Syd to hand her Page 47 of the Rambaldi manuscript in exchange for the bomb's deactivation. When Syd notes that handing over the page will not guarantee Will's safety, Marshall suggests that he can build a device that can track the bomb frequency and reverse engineer the activation. The only catch is Will has to be close to the detonator.

On a train In Lisbon, Will asks Sydney to be the best man at his wedding. They then tap into the train's security system and find Anna. To bring Will close to the detonator, Syd meets with Anna for the trade. Syd gives her Page 47, but Anna begins the countdown and Will's head beeps. Syd steals the detonator and stops the countdown. Anna escapes and locks Syd in the car. Suddenly, Syd is showered with red liquid. Anna calls Peyton and confirms that Sydney's DNA is being collected.

Will knocks out Anna and frees Syd. Anna recovers, activates another detonator and throws it off the train and into a lake. Syd and Will dive into the lake. Syd finds the detonator in time to deactivate it and once again save Will's life.

Sloane meets with Peyton and she assures him that Sydney wasn't hurt in any of their experiments. In exchange, she hands Sloane a chemical compound that could save Nadia. Meanwhile, Will and Sydney walk through a park where Syd apologizes for the chaos she's brought him. Will assures her that it is not her fault that evil people that exist, and that he sleeps better knowing that there is only one Sydney who can keep the world safe.

In Moscow, Anna enters a tank filled with red liquid. She emerges with Sydney's face.

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Will Tippin (Bradley Cooper) was back tonight and it was good. I hope he'll be in the remaining episodes. One puzzling thing though. I thought that they (Sydney and Jack) admitted that they knew Vaughn was alive? I hope I heard wrong, though, because if they suddenly "know" this then there's a gap in the story. Apparently he is alive, as we found out last week at the very end. Well, I won't know for sure until I can watch tonight's episode on DVD - probably in the fall.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

What color Sharpie are you??







What Color Sharpie Are You? (25 different colors) Updated!




Blue Sharpie
"I love it when it rains, then no one can see my tears."


Take this quiz!








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Monday, April 24, 2006

I feel so loved...

... because on consecutive days I was tagged by both sarafina AND constant rain to complete this post of 10 of my simplest pleasures. But because I was tagged twice DOESN'T mean that I've got to think of twice as many (at least I hope not...)

So, now I have to actually think about this because I'm sure I take some of these things for granted.

1. TELLING MY KIDS THAT I LOVE THEM and hearing them say it back to me, because it's how they really feel.

2. GETTING VOLUNTARY HUGS AND KISSES FROM MY KIDS and giving hugs and kisses right back to them because I love them so much. There will come a time when this won't happen anymore, so I need to treasure it while it lasts.

3. HEARING MY KIDS LAUGH when I tickle them and laughing when they tickle me back.

4. TALKING TO MY KIDS and being amazed at their development and how they are growing up right before my eyes.

5. BEING ABLE TO SLEEP LATE on a Saturday morning, even if it only means sleeping until 8:30 AM.

6. READING A GOOD BOOK whether it be my Bible or a fantasy/science fiction story or anything in between. Getting caught up in the adventure that the author has planned out and becoming emotionally involved in the story.

7. LEARNING SOMETHING NEW no matter what it might be, even if I don't fully understand everything about what I'm learning right away.

8. WATCHING EITHER OF MY TWO FAVORITE TEAMS PLAY either on television or live and in person. I think this especially applies to football, since games are only played once a week. Regular readers here should know who those teams are.

9. BEING OUTSIDE ON A SUMMER DAY and feeling the sun on my face and the breeze through my hair no matter if I'm sitting under a tree reading a book or a pen and paper working on my writing or if I'm swiming in the pool relaxing or just enjoying the beauty of God's creation.

10. EATING MY FAVORITE JUNK FOOD which of course would be Reese's Peanut Butter Cups (pretty much anything chocolate would do, though) along with a Mountain Dew.

BONUS. SNUGGLING UP WITH THAT SPECIAL SOMEONE and spending time with HER, talking or whatever. I can't tell you how much I miss this and how much I took it for granted when I did have it.

Okay that wasn't as hard as I thought it would be. Now I'm going to tag: KAYLA, MYSTICAL ME, ALTHEA, KRISTI, CEZI and AMZ. Ladies, you are it!!!

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Test for Dementia

Another amusing email from my infamous grandmother. Perhaps you've seen this one before...

Exercise of the brain is as important as exercise of the muscles. As we grow older, it's important to keep mentally alert. If you don't use it, you lose it! Below is a very private way to gauge your loss or non-loss of intelligence.


Take the test presented here to determine if you're losing it or not. The spaces below are so you don't see the answers until you've made your answer.

OK, relax, clear your mind and begin.






1. What do you put in a toaster?
























Answer: "bread." If you said "toast," give up now and do something else. Try not to hurt yourself. If you said, bread, go to Question 2.

2. Say "silk" five times. Now spell "silk." What do cows drink?
























Answer: Cows drink water. If you said "milk," don't attempt the next question. Your brain is over-stressed and may even overheat. Content yourself with reading a more appropriate literature such as Auto World. However, if you said "water", proceed to question 3.

3. If a red house is made from red bricks and a blue house is made from blue bricks and a pink house is made from pink bricks and a black house is made from black bricks, what is a green house made from?























Answer: Greenhouses are made from glass. If you said "green bricks," why are you still reading these??? If you said "glass," go on to Question 4.

4. It's twenty years ago, and a plane is flying at 20,000 feet over Germany (If you will recall, Germany at the time was politically divided into West Germany and East Germany.) Anyway, during the flight, TWO engines fail. The pilot, realizing that the last remaining engine is also failing, decides on a crash landing procedure. Unfortunately the engine fails before he can do so and the plane fatally crashes smack in the middle of "no man's land" between East Germany and West Germany. Where would you bury the survivors? East Germany, West Germany, or no man's land"?






















Answer: You don't bury survivors. If you said ANYTHING else, you're a dunce and you must stop. If you said, "You don't bury survivors", proceed to the next question.

5. Without using a calculator - You are driving a bus from London to Milford Haven in Wales. In London, 17 people get on the bus; In Reading, six people get off the bus and nine people get on. In Swindon, two people get off and four get on. In Cardiff , 11 people get off and 16 people get on. In Swansea, three people get off and five people get on In Carmathen, six people get off and three get on. You then arrive at Milford Haven. What was the name of the bus driver?






















Answer: Oh, for crying out loud! Don't you remember your own name? It was YOU!!




PS: 95% of people fail most of the questions!!

Saturday, April 22, 2006

SNMR 1.6: "The Outsiders"

Tonight's SNMR feature is "The Outsiders" (1983, PG-13, 113 minutes) starring C. Thoms Howell, Matt Dillon, Diane Lane, Ralph Macchio, Rob Lowe, Patrick Swayze, Emilio Estevez, Tom Cruise and Leif Garrett. The film was directed by Francis Ford Coppola.

I first saw this movie in the theater when it came out because we were reading the novel in my 8th grade English class. My teacher, Mrs. Rancourt, thought it would be a great idea to take all of her English classes on a field trip to see it, otherwise I probably wouldn't have.

I probably haven't watched this movie in about 20 years or so and I am amazed at how touching the story is and how the cast of this movie is the 80's version of "American Graffiti" since the majority of the cast in each of these films have gone on to well known careers.

The story sort of reminds me of "American Graffiti," too - though I haven't seen that film in a long time - and a non-musical version of "West Side Story."

From two versions of the DVD's dust jacket:

"In 1966 Tulsa, teenagers come two ways. If your a "soc,"you've got money, cars, a future. But if you're a "greaser," you're an outsider with only your friends... and a dream that someday you'll finally belong.

Frances Coppola's powerful film of S.E. Hinton's classic novel captures how it feels to be caught between childhood's innocence and adulthood's disillusionment. The ensemble is a who's who of young talents of the past two decades... Movingly and in an intensely visual style, Coppola has made these street rats and their struggle heroic and unforgettable."

"In 1983, Francis Ford Coppola's film of S.E. Hinton's novel struck a powerful chord with audiences, capturing the intense feelings of being caught between childhoood and adulthood, and not belonging anywhere. Decades later, Coppola has revisited the film and reintegrated 22 minutes of charachter enriching footage, including a new beginning and ending more true to the book. A rousing new soundtrack featuring six songs from Elvis Presley and other music greats make this new version of "The Outsiders" one of movie history's great rediscoveries."


While the acting performances in this film aren't great, the story is still powerful and relevant. There are some memorable lines in the movie, like "Let's do it for Johnny! Let's do it for Johnny, man!!" The adaptation from book to the screen, is pretty faithful from what I can remember from reading the book, so many years ago. Overall, I liked this drama because I've basically grown up alongside the actors, watching their careers progress. This film is a worthy rental, especially if you grew up in the mid 1960's. I'll give this film three and a half out of five stars.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Sometimes plans change...

...even when we don't want them to. Mine certainly have.

Wednesday night I made gorditas for myself for dinner. When I bought the ingredients, I didn't buy any sour cream because I had some in the refrigerator. I really wanted and was looking forward to having sour cream with my gorditas. When I went to open the container, I discovered that my sour cream really was sour. Yecch. So I went without and the gorditas came out fine.

Was I disappointed? Absolutely.

Will it be the end of the world? No. Probably not.

Today, on my way to meet the ex and pick up the kids, I stopped at the post office to check my mailbox for the first time since Tuesday. What do you think was the first thing I pulled out of a full mailbox?

The letter I have been waiting for, regarding The Plan. Just not this version of it.


April 18, 2006


Dear (Green),

The Admissions Committee has reviewed your application for admission to Dallas Theological Seminary. I regret to inform you that the Committee was not able to approve your application.

Applicants are evaluated on the basis of the academic record, the extent and quality of involvement in Christian service, the apparent gifts and potential placement into Christian ministry, and the assessment of references. The Admissions Committee found the need for strengthening within these areas and was not able to approve your application.

We trust that the Lord will continue to guide you as you seek an opportunity for further study in preparation for Christian service.

In His service,

Director of Admissions


Am I disappointed? Absolutely.

Will it be the end of the world? No.

So the door has been closed for my plan to move to Texas. I still feel like I am being called by the Holy Spirit to work in, and still have the desire to get into the ministry. Now I'll just have to find a different path to get there.

Does this setback shake or alter my faith? No. Now I just need to reflect and pray about it, which way God is leading me. First thing I need to do is e-mail the Director of Admissions at DTS to get specifics on where my application was weak and what improvements I need to make to strengthen it.

Sometimes we get so caught up in our own plans that we lose sight of the fact that God is in control and has a plan. Sometimes, our plans and His plans do not coincide. It is these times when we must trust that He knows what He's doing, even though I don't.

What I do know is that there will be (has to be) changes in my life this year, just not quite the ones I was hoping for. For one, at present job and salary, I can no longer afford to live here. Since it appears I'm not moving the job or salary will need to change. I will keep you informed of developments as the occasion arises.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

A Potato Story

Since it's been a while that I've posted anything from my infamous grandmother, I give you this, which made me chuckle a wee-bit.


Well, Girl Potato and Boy Potato had eyes for each other, and finally they got married, and had a little sweet potato, which they called 'Yam.'

Of course, they wanted the best for Yam. When it was time, they told her about the facts of life. They warned her about going out and getting half-baked, so she wouldn't get accidentally mashed, and get a bad name for herself like 'Hot Potato,' and end up with a bunch of Tater Tots.

Yam said not to worry, no Spud would get her into the sack and make a rotten potato out of her! But on the other hand she wouldn't stay home and become a Couch Potato either. She would get plenty of exercise so as not to be skinny like her Shoestring cousins.

When she went off to Europe, Mr. and Mrs. Potato told Yam to watch out for the hard-boiled guys from Ireland. And the greasy guys from France called the French Fries and when she went out west, to watch out for the Indians so she wouldn't get scalloped.

Yam said she would stay on the straight and narrow and wouldn't associate with those high class Yukon Golds, or the ones from the other side of the tracks who advertise their trade on all the trucks that say, 'Frito Lay.'

Mr. and Mrs. Potato sent Yam to Idaho P.U. (that's Potato University) so that when she graduated she'd really be in the Chips.

But in spite of all they did for her, one-day Yam came home and announced she was going to marry Tom Brokaw. Tom Brokaw!

Mr. and Mrs. Potato were very upset. They told Yam she couldn't possibly marry Tom Brokaw because he's just.......

Are you ready for this?

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Are you sure?

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OK! Here it is!

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A COMMON TATER

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Alias 5.10: Solo & Alias 5.11: Maternal Instinct

Alias is back for the first time since December. It's about time, though after tonight there are only five episodes left. That will bring the season total to 16, which is six episodes short of a full, normal, 22 episode season. I feel used. I want the full monty. I just hope that in these next five weeks that all of the loose ends get tied up as the series ends. Though I can just see sometime in the perhaps not too distant future an "ALIAS" movie, transitioning the TV series to an occasional feature length film, since storylines of government intelligence agencies battling the "bad guys" are virtually limitless.

So the weekly ALIAS updates on this blog resume, starting tonight. From abc's website:

5.10: Solo

At sea on a cargo ship, Sydney hurries to the lower deck, finds a radio, and issues a distress signal.

At APO, Jack tells Sloane that Prophet 5 has Syd. Marshall recovers Sydney's transmission but it's deleted by a Langley insider before he could listen to it - meaning Prophet 5 has infiltrated the CIA. They determine to go to Langley to recover the message.

Marshall and Dixon join a group of tourists at CIA headquarters. Meanwhile, Tom goes to the Payroll Department to complain about a missed paycheck. Rachel, pretending she has an interview, leaves her cell phone with the guard. The cell phone is actually a device that infiltrates security. Tom commandeers a Payroll Dept. desktop and, using the data sent from the cell phone, grants Rachel security access to the CIA server room. He also unlocks the Witness Protection records room.

Marshall distracts onlookers by announcing he's cracked the code that appears on a monument. Dixon sprays a surveillance camera, causing an "Anthrax alert." Rachel then slips into the server room but finds that Syd's transmission was purged. Jack tells her to pull the hard drive, knowing that it will raise the alarm and cause a lockdown. He calls Weiss for help.

Weiss arrives and apologizes to Dixon, whom he calls "Ambassador." While he escorts Dixon and Marshall out, he gives Dixon the key to get Tom. Marshall ducks into an office, locates Rachel with surveillance cameras and guides her through a maze of servers.

On the boat, Syd holds Peyton at gunpoint and asks her to explain the ultrasound images posted in a room. She faints, however. She wakes to find herself being prepped for surgery.

At APO, Marshall and Dixon inspect the hard drive and discover that the person who purged the records had Alpha Black clearance. Only seven directors have this clearance. They also find the secured cell phone numbers that enable these men to access the code. Marshall says he can trace which phone was used to access the server.

Tom uses Marshall's PC to decode the info he downloaded from the Witness Protection records. The data contains photos of his murdered wife along with the name and location of a man. Later, Tom pays a visit to the man.

Jack convenes a meeting with the seven directors, Marshall locks in a match and calls that phone. When Director Davenport's phone rings, Jack immediately shoots him and forces him to divulge Sydney's whereabouts. CIA security arrests Jack.

The doctors perform an amnio on Syd and decide to operate. Dixon arrives on the ship and realizes it's abandoned except for the infirmary. He spots the post-op Syd and takes her to the helicopter.

At the hospital, Jack tells Syd that the baby is fine, that the mysterious surgery actually corrected a placential abruption. After a few minutes, an armed guard tells Jack that it is time to go and a confused Sydney says reluctantly goodbye to her father.

5.11: Maternal Instinct

After Davenport's ambulance is ambushed, he's assassinated -- by none other than Irina Derevko.

Jack informs Syd of Davenport's death and says that CIA Director Devlin suspects a mole in the APO office. Since APO is under investigation, and because a condition of his release is to close the Prophet Five case, Jack vows to continue the investigation without documentation.

Syd tells Jack that Prophet Five wanted to know about "Leo-47 Norte." Jack and Dixon recall that it was an SD-6 mission that took place in a French territory. Jack assigns Dixon to fly to France and contact Renee Rienne. Jack also directs Sydney to go to a safe house.

Irina waits for Syd at her apartment. Irina admits knowledge of Prophet Five. She says that Prophet Five wants to pursue "The Horizon," which they believe Sydney knows about. Sydney says that she doesn't but that she had shared the name of the French mission with her father.

Despite Devlin's ongoing investigation, Jack enlists Marshall's help to break into their archives and look up a contact for the "Leo-47 Norte" mission. He finds out about Jean Bertrand's involvement and forwards this information to Dixon. With Renee Rienne, Dixon forces Bertrand to reveal more about The Horizon, which is stored in a safety deposit box in a Vancouver bank.

Posing as an Italian family, Irina, Jack and Syd infiltrate the bank. As Jack and Irina inquire about safety deposit boxes, Syd hacks into the bank manager's computer.

With Rachel's help, Syd locates The Horizon's box and relays the info to Jack. Irina tranquilizes the manager and starts to work on retrieving The Horizon.

With the lead that Irina had provided them, Peyton and her armed men from Prophet Five arrive in the Vancouver building and kill the guards.

With the The Horizon -- which is booby trapped -- in Jack's hands, Irina attacks him. Jack deflects her as Syd enters. It dawns on Sydney that Irina orchestrated her abduction for Prophet Five. When Irina insists that Peyton will kill her too, Jack responds by saying he will kill Irina first. Suddenly, Sydney's contractions begin.

Believing she's helping Jack and Syd, Rachel, under Sloane's direction, deletes records of Sloane's outgoing transmission to his Prophet Five contact.

With Peyton's team on the move, Irina leads Syd and Jack to the roof, where a helicopter will extract them. Peyton watches them on a surveillance camera. She picks up a rocket-launcher and blasts the copter to pieces. Jack tells Syd to keep a gun on her mother as he goes back down to fight Peyton's team. After killing her henchmen, Jack squares off with Peyton. He takes aim at a nearby fire extinguisher, which explodes, killing her. Or so he thinks.

Irina tells Syd that the KGB forced her to bear Jack's child to ensure his loyalty. When Syd was born, she says, she had to choose between being a good agent or being a good mother -- or fail at both. She chose being a good agent. At this moment, Sydney goes into labor.

Jack arrives to calm Sydney down as she goes into labor. With both her parents' support, Sydney delivers a baby girl. Irina bolts with the pouch containing The Horizon, while Sydney and Jack swaddle the baby. Marshall receives a call from Irina, who tells him that Sydney and Jack need extraction.

In Bhutan, a horseman speeds to an isolated hut by the hillside. He relays a message to a monk sitting calmly in the middle of the room. The monk then walks to another room and shares the news of Sydney's infant daughter with Michael Vaughn.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

What kind of sportscar are you?

Found this on mystical me's old blog archives just before she deleted it... and it's a good thing too, since I've nothing better to post tonight.....

I think the description below fits me very nicely....

I'm an Audi TT!




You're not the fastest, nor the most nimble, but you're cute and you have style. You're not intensely competitive, but when you pass by, everyone turns to look.

Take the Which Sports Car Are You? quiz.



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========> Programming note: ALIAS returns tomorrow night at 8:00 PM for two hours!!! Can you guess what I'll be doing tomorrow night??? I CAN'T WAIT!!!!!<========

Monday, April 17, 2006

An Invitation for You

Dear fellow bloggers and casual passers by:

In celebration of my longtime friend american guy's one year anniversary of his blog, I have been asked to be one of four co-contributors (along with scribe and dabich) to a brand new blog, officially beginning today.

The blog is called GOD vs. DARWIN (also linked on my sidebar) in which we will cordially discuss all things related to Christianity and religion vs. atheism. Probably other stuff too, but who knows.

It should come as no surprise to regualr readers of this blog that I am a staunch defender of Scripture, and thus will gladly play the role of the "Hard-Core Christian."

I invite you to drop by and comment on the topics that each of us will, in turn, post. This blog should be fun to contribute to and I hope entertaining for you to read and enjoy as well. Heck, you might even learn something...

Your comments, questions and concerns are always welcome there.

Cordially,

green

Sunday, April 16, 2006

The Lord is Risen

There is nothing more that I can add to the magnificence of what Christians celebrate today, so I present to you the four gospel accounts of Jesus resurrection:

The Burial of Jesus
57As evening approached, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who had himself become a disciple of Jesus. 58Going to Pilate, he asked for Jesus' body, and Pilate ordered that it be given to him. 59Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, 60and placed it in his own new tomb that he had cut out of the rock. He rolled a big stone in front of the entrance to the tomb and went away. 61Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were sitting there opposite the tomb.

The Guard at the Tomb
62The next day, the one after Preparation Day, the chief priests and the Pharisees went to Pilate. 63"Sir," they said, "we remember that while he was still alive that deceiver said, 'After three days I will rise again.' 64So give the order for the tomb to be made secure until the third day. Otherwise, his disciples may come and steal the body and tell the people that he has been raised from the dead. This last deception will be worse than the first."
65"Take a guard," Pilate answered. "Go, make the tomb as secure as you know how." 66So they went and made the tomb secure by putting a seal on the stone and posting the guard.

Matthew 28
The Resurrection

1After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb.
2There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. 3His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. 4The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men.

5The angel said to the women, "Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. 6He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. 7Then go quickly and tell his disciples: 'He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.' Now I have told you."

8So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. 9Suddenly Jesus met them. "Greetings," he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him. 10Then Jesus said to them, "Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me."

The Guards' Report
11While the women were on their way, some of the guards went into the city and reported to the chief priests everything that had happened. 12When the chief priests had met with the elders and devised a plan, they gave the soldiers a large sum of money, 13telling them, "You are to say, 'His disciples came during the night and stole him away while we were asleep.' 14If this report gets to the governor, we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble." 15So the soldiers took the money and did as they were instructed. And this story has been widely circulated among the Jews to this very day. --Matthew 27:57-28:15 NIV



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The Burial of Jesus
42It was Preparation Day (that is, the day before the Sabbath). So as evening approached, 43Joseph of Arimathea, a prominent member of the Council, who was himself waiting for the kingdom of God, went boldly to Pilate and asked for Jesus' body. 44Pilate was surprised to hear that he was already dead. Summoning the centurion, he asked him if Jesus had already died. 45When he learned from the centurion that it was so, he gave the body to Joseph. 46So Joseph bought some linen cloth, took down the body, wrapped it in the linen, and placed it in a tomb cut out of rock. Then he rolled a stone against the entrance of the tomb. 47Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses saw where he was laid.

Mark 16
The Resurrection
1When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus' body. 2Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb 3and they asked each other, "Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?"
4But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away. 5As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed.

6"Don't be alarmed," he said. "You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. 7But go, tell his disciples and Peter, 'He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.' "

8Trembling and bewildered, the women went out and fled from the tomb. They said nothing to anyone, because they were afraid.

9When Jesus rose early on the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had driven seven demons. 10She went and told those who had been with him and who were mourning and weeping. 11When they heard that Jesus was alive and that she had seen him, they did not believe it.
12Afterward Jesus appeared in a different form to two of them while they were walking in the country. 13These returned and reported it to the rest; but they did not believe them either. --Mark 15:42-16:13 (NIV)


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Jesus' Burial
50Now there was a man named Joseph, a member of the Council, a good and upright man, 51who had not consented to their decision and action. He came from the Judean town of Arimathea and he was waiting for the kingdom of God. 52Going to Pilate, he asked for Jesus' body. 53Then he took it down, wrapped it in linen cloth and placed it in a tomb cut in the rock, one in which no one had yet been laid. 54It was Preparation Day, and the Sabbath was about to begin.
55The women who had come with Jesus from Galilee followed Joseph and saw the tomb and how his body was laid in it. 56Then they went home and prepared spices and perfumes. But they rested on the Sabbath in obedience to the commandment.

Luke 24
The Resurrection

1On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. 2They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, 3but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. 4While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. 5In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, "Why do you look for the living among the dead? 6He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: 7'The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.' " 8Then they remembered his words.
9When they came back from the tomb, they told all these things to the Eleven and to all the others. 10It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the others with them who told this to the apostles. 11But they did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like nonsense. 12Peter, however, got up and ran to the tomb. Bending over, he saw the strips of linen lying by themselves, and he went away, wondering to himself what had happened.

On the Road to Emmaus
13Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles[a] from Jerusalem. 14They were talking with each other about everything that had happened. 15As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them; 16but they were kept from recognizing him.
17He asked them, "What are you discussing together as you walk along?"

They stood still, their faces downcast. 18One of them, named Cleopas, asked him, "Are you only a visitor to Jerusalem and do not know the things that have happened there in these days?"

19"What things?" he asked.

"About Jesus of Nazareth," they replied. "He was a prophet, powerful in word and deed before God and all the people. 20The chief priests and our rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they crucified him; 21but we had hoped that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. And what is more, it is the third day since all this took place. 22In addition, some of our women amazed us. They went to the tomb early this morning 23but didn't find his body. They came and told us that they had seen a vision of angels, who said he was alive. 24Then some of our companions went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but him they did not see."

25He said to them, "How foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26Did not the Christ[b] have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?" 27And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.

28As they approached the village to which they were going, Jesus acted as if he were going farther. 29But they urged him strongly, "Stay with us, for it is nearly evening; the day is almost over." So he went in to stay with them.

30When he was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them. 31Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him, and he disappeared from their sight. 32They asked each other, "Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?"

33They got up and returned at once to Jerusalem. There they found the Eleven and those with them, assembled together 34and saying, "It is true! The Lord has risen and has appeared to Simon." 35Then the two told what had happened on the way, and how Jesus was recognized by them when he broke the bread.

Jesus Appears to the Disciples
36While they were still talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, "Peace be with you."
37They were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost. 38He said to them, "Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds? 39Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have."

40When he had said this, he showed them his hands and feet. 41And while they still did not believe it because of joy and amazement, he asked them, "Do you have anything here to eat?" 42They gave him a piece of broiled fish, 43and he took it and ate it in their presence.

44He said to them, "This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms."

45Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. 46He told them, "This is what is written: The Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48You are witnesses of these things.
--Luke 23:50-24:48 (NIV)


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The Burial of Jesus
38Later, Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate for the body of Jesus. Now Joseph was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly because he feared the Jews. With Pilate's permission, he came and took the body away. 39He was accompanied by Nicodemus, the man who earlier had visited Jesus at night. Nicodemus brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds.[a] 40Taking Jesus' body, the two of them wrapped it, with the spices, in strips of linen. This was in accordance with Jewish burial customs. 41At the place where Jesus was crucified, there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb, in which no one had ever been laid. 42Because it was the Jewish day of Preparation and since the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.

John 20
The Empty Tomb

1Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. 2So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, "They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don't know where they have put him!"
3So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. 4Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. 5He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. 6Then Simon Peter, who was behind him, arrived and went into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, 7as well as the burial cloth that had been around Jesus' head. The cloth was folded up by itself, separate from the linen. 8Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed. 9(They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead.)

Jesus Appears to Mary Magdalene
10Then the disciples went back to their homes, 11but Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb 12and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus' body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot.
13They asked her, "Woman, why are you crying?"

"They have taken my Lord away," she said, "and I don't know where they have put him." 14At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus.

15"Woman," he said, "why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?"
Thinking he was the gardener, she said, "Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him."

16Jesus said to her, "Mary."
She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, "Rabboni!" (which means Teacher).

17Jesus said, "Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet returned to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, 'I am returning to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.' "

18Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: "I have seen the Lord!" And she told them that he had said these things to her.

Jesus Appears to His Disciples
19On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you!" 20After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.
21Again Jesus said, "Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you." 22And with that he breathed on them and said, "Receive the Holy Spirit. 23If you forgive anyone his sins, they are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven."

Jesus Appears to Thomas
24Now Thomas (called Didymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. 25So the other disciples told him, "We have seen the Lord!"
But he said to them, "Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe it."
26A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you!" 27Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe."

28Thomas said to him, "My Lord and my God!"

29Then Jesus told him, "Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed."

30Jesus did many other miraculous signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. 31But these are written that you may[b] believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.

John 21
Jesus and the Miraculous Catch of Fish

1Afterward Jesus appeared again to his disciples, by the Sea of Tiberias.[c] It happened this way: 2Simon Peter, Thomas (called Didymus), Nathanael from Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee, and two other disciples were together. 3"I'm going out to fish," Simon Peter told them, and they said, "We'll go with you." So they went out and got into the boat, but that night they caught nothing.
4Early in the morning, Jesus stood on the shore, but the disciples did not realize that it was Jesus.

5He called out to them, "Friends, haven't you any fish?"
"No," they answered.

6He said, "Throw your net on the right side of the boat and you will find some." When they did, they were unable to haul the net in because of the large number of fish.

7Then the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, "It is the Lord!" As soon as Simon Peter heard him say, "It is the Lord," he wrapped his outer garment around him (for he had taken it off) and jumped into the water. 8The other disciples followed in the boat, towing the net full of fish, for they were not far from shore, about a hundred yards.[d] 9When they landed, they saw a fire of burning coals there with fish on it, and some bread.

10Jesus said to them, "Bring some of the fish you have just caught."

11Simon Peter climbed aboard and dragged the net ashore. It was full of large fish, 153, but even with so many the net was not torn. 12Jesus said to them, "Come and have breakfast." None of the disciples dared ask him, "Who are you?" They knew it was the Lord. 13Jesus came, took the bread and gave it to them, and did the same with the fish. 14This was now the third time Jesus appeared to his disciples after he was raised from the dead.

Jesus Reinstates Peter
15When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, "Simon son of John, do you truly love me more than these?"
"Yes, Lord," he said, "you know that I love you."
Jesus said, "Feed my lambs."
16Again Jesus said, "Simon son of John, do you truly love me?"
He answered, "Yes, Lord, you know that I love you."
Jesus said, "Take care of my sheep."

17The third time he said to him, "Simon son of John, do you love me?"
Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, "Do you love me?" He said, "Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you."

18Jesus said, "Feed my sheep. I tell you the truth, when you were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go." 19Jesus said this to indicate the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God. Then he said to him, "Follow me!"

20Peter turned and saw that the disciple whom Jesus loved was following them. (This was the one who had leaned back against Jesus at the supper and had said, "Lord, who is going to betray you?") 21When Peter saw him, he asked, "Lord, what about him?"

22Jesus answered, "If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you? You must follow me." 23Because of this, the rumor spread among the brothers that this disciple would not die. But Jesus did not say that he would not die; he only said, "If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you?"

24This is the disciple who testifies to these things and who wrote them down. We know that his testimony is true.

25Jesus did many other things as well. If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written. --John 19:38-21:25 (NIV)

Saturday, April 15, 2006

SNMR 1.5: "The Passion of the Christ"

With tomorrow being Easter, I thought it appropriate to choose for tonight's SNMR feature, "The Passion of the Christ" (2004, R, 126 minutes) starring James Caviezel, Maia Morgenstern, Monica Bellucci, Hristo Shopov and Mattia Sbragia. The film was directed by Mel Gibson.

I originally saw this film in the theater when it was first released (on Ash Wednesday, 2004), in part becasue I am a Christian and also in part becasue of all of the hype surrounding its release. I also knew that when it came out on DVD that it would be worth owning, but I resisted buying it until late last year.

The film was nominated for three Academy Awards but did not win any. It did win other awards, however. See http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0335345/awards for the full breakdown. This is the highest-grossing rated R film in US box office history earning $370 million. In a rarity for Hollywood releases, re-entered the #1 spot at the box office for the weekend of Good Friday, 2004.

From the DVD's dust jacket:

"From Academy Award winning director Mel Gibson comes a profound story of courage and sacrifice depicting the final twelve hours in the life of Jesus Christ. Featuring stunning cinematography and an inspired performance by Jim Caviezel, The Passion of the Christ is a triumphant and uncompromising filmmaking achievement."


From Martin and Porter's DVD & Video Guide 2006, p. 862:

"Director Mel Gibson's stunning dramatization of the trial and crucifixion of Jesus stirred up a prerelease controversy for its alleged anti-Semitic portrayal of the Sanhedrin and high priest Caiaphas. Those fears proved groundless, although the graphic scenes of Jesus' scourging make the film unsuitable for the squeamish or immature. For others, its a powerful, deeply moving work of religious art. In Latin, Hebrew and Aramaic with English subtitles. Rated R for violent images."


This is a very powerful film, whether you are a Christian or not, depicting the most important and pivotal event in history. Most everyone knows the story, which is why you can begin it without any plot build-up. Even though the film is spoken in three foreign languages (with English subtitles) that didn't bother me either time I've watched it. That's how familiar this story is. Frankly, the one thing I liked best about it was the gore and violence that accurately portrayed the beating Jesus took even before being nailed to the cross. I think today we have such a sanitized view of what crucifixion was all about that we lose sight of just how horrible of a way this is to die, arguably the cruelest possible way. How humiliating it was. How painful it was. I'll give this film five out of five stars.

Happy Keester

Friday, April 14, 2006

Anniversaries

Today marks the 2nd anniversary of my divorce becoming official. I'm not depressed about this. Ex and I actually get along better now then we did towards the end of our 9 1/2 year marriage, primarily because we don't see each other every day. Sure there is still some tension there between us, as I'm sure there will always be.

If I have any regrets regarding the dissolution of my marriage it would be the things I did to drive the wedge between us deeper and the way I handled it. Not very Christian-like to be sure. I also regret that my kids have to grow up dealing with a divorce situation. But they handle it well most of the time.

No, there's no chance of reconciliation, nor do I want there to be.

What is depressing is that I have been without a relationship since ex and I separated in August, 2003 and that (aside from one post separation instance) means that it has been 30 months since I have been intimate with a woman. Now I know that sex is not the basis for any lasting relationship and as a Christian, I know that sex outside of marriage is a no-no. Still, as a normal, healthy man this is a reality I deal with and something I think about.

In case you missed it, Christians are not perfect, just forgiven.

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Today also marks the 141st anniversary of one of the most heinous crimes ever committed in American history. And it happened to my favorite US President of days gone by.

The same calendar variation we're using this year was also used in 1865. Coincidentally, the date was also a Good Friday that year. April 14th, 1865 at 10:15 PM, Abraham Lincoln was murdered in cold blood at Ford's Theater in Washington, DC while watching the play "Our American Cousin," starring Laura Keene and Henry Hawk. Riveted to the on-stage action, Lincoln never saw Booth or the bullet coming.

One of the best books I've read on the subject is "The Day Lincoln Was Shot" by Jim Bishop. It gives an hour by hour look at the last day of Lincoln's life, and the preparations made by Booth and his conspirators.

Ford's Theater and the Petersen House are still two of my favorite places in DC to visit. I always make the time to go there, even though I've been many times.

Can you imagine how American history might have been different if this great man got to live longer than his 56 years? I can't either.

Abraham Lincoln died at 7:22 AM, Saturday, April 15, 1865. When Lincoln breathed his last, Secretary Stanton said of him, "Now he belongs to the ages."

Thursday, April 13, 2006

This is post #300

Yes, kids my blog has reached its 300 post and I really can't believe it. Well, yes I can, actually - since I post almost every day it was bound to happen sooner rather than later.

Please don't waste your time commenting on this post as it's just a marker for something more in depth that I'm still working on. When I'm finished, this post will be deleted......

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Good Wednesday makes more sense

It has been my goal with this week's posts to lead you down a certain road. I hope I have done this successfully. Here's why:
The church has traditions that are almost as old as the church itself. One of these traditions I question is Good Friday. Looking at this traditional holiday through the eyes of the Word of God makes me wonder, "Did Christ really die on a Friday?" Now I'm not questioning the reality of Christ's death, just on what day of the week it really happened. So I present to you the best Scripturally based (for that is always the key) argument I have read against Good Friday. Read this for yourself and make up your own mind if the argument Torrey makes makes sense.

Was Jesus Really Three Days and Three Nights in the Heart of the Earth?

by R.A. Torrey (1856-1928)

In the twelfth chapter of Matthew’s gospel, Jesus is reported as saying, “As
Jonah was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of
man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth” (Matt. 12:40).
According to the commonly accepted tradition of the church, Jesus was crucified
on Friday, dying at 3 PM, or somewhere between 3 PM and sundown, and was raised
from the dead very early in the morning of the following Sunday. Many readers of
the Bible are puzzled to know how the interval between late Friday afternoon and
early Sunday morning can be figured out to be three days and three nights. It
seems rather to be two nights, one day, and a very small portion of another day.

The solution proposed by many commentators to this apparent difficulty,
is that “a day and a night” is simply another way of saying, “a day,” and the
ancient Jews reckoned a fraction of a day as a whole day. So they say there was
a part (a very small part) of Friday (or a day and a night), all of Saturday,
another day (or a day and a night); and part of Sunday (a very small part),
another day (or a day and a night). There are many persons whom this solution
does not altogether satisfy, and I confess it does not satisfy me at all. It
seems to me to be a makeshift, and a very weak makeshift. Is there any solution
that is altogether satisfactory? There is.

The first fact to be noticed
in the proper solution is that the Bible nowhere says or implies that Jesus was
crucified and died on Friday. It is said that Jesus was crucified on “the day
before the Sabbath” (Mark 15:42). As the Jewish weekly Sabbath came on Saturday
(beginning at sunset the day before), the conclusion is naturally drawn that,
since Jesus was crucified the day before the Sabbath, He must have been
crucified on Friday.

However, it is a well-known fact, to which the
Bible bears abundant testimony, that the Jews had other Sabbaths besides the
weekly Sabbath that fell on Saturday. The first day of the Passover week, no
matter upon what day of the week it came, was always a Sabbath (Exodus 12:16;
Leviticus 23:7; Numbers 28:16-18). The question therefore arises whether the
Sabbath that followed Christ’s crucifixion was the weekly Sabbath (Saturday) or
the Passover Sabbath, falling on the fifteenth day of Nisan, which came that
year on Thursday.

Now, the Bible does not leave us to speculate which
Sabbath is meant in this instance; for John tells us in so many words, in John
19:14, the day on which Jesus was tried and crucified was “the preparation of
the Passover”
(italics added). In other words, it was not the day before the
weekly Sabbath (that is, Saturday), but it was the day before the Passover
Sabbath, which came that year on Thursday- that is to say, the day on which
Jesus Christ was crucified was a Wednesday. John makes this as clear as day.

The gospel of John was written later than the other Gospels, and
scholars have for a long time noticed that in various places there was an
evident intention to correct false impressions that one might get from reading
the other Gospels. One of these false impressions was that Jesus ate the
Passover with His disciples at the regular time of the Passover. To correct this
false impression, John clearly states that He ate it the evening before, and
that He Himself died on the cross at the very moment the Passover lambs were
being slain “between the two evenings” on the fourteenth day of Nisan. (See
Exodus 12:6 in the Hebrew, and the Revised Version margin.)

God’s real
Paschal Lamb, Jesus, of whom all other paschal lambs offered through the
centuries were only types, was therefore slain at the very time appointed by
God. Everything about the Passover Lamb was fulfilled in Jesus. First, He was a
Lamb without blemish and without spot (Exodus 12:5). Second, He was chosen on
the tenth day of Nisan (Exodus 12:3); for it was on the tenth day of the month,
the preceding Saturday, that the triumphal entry into Jerusalem was made.

We know this because He came from Jericho to Bethany six days before the
Passover (John 12:1). That would be six days before Thursday, which would be
Friday. Furthermore, it was on the next day that the entry into Jerusalem was
made (John 12:12 and following), that is, on Saturday., the tenth day of Nisan.
It was also on this same day that Judas went to the chief priests and offered to
betray Jesus for thirty pieces of silver (Matthew 26:6-16 and Mark 14:3-11). As
it was after the supper in the house of Simon the leper, and as the supper
occurred late on Friday or early on Saturday, after sunset, after the supper
would necessarily be on the tenth of Nisan. This being the price set on Him by
the chief priests, it was, of course, the buying or taking to them of a lamb,
which according to law must occur on the tenth day of Nisan. Furthermore, they
put the exact value on the Lamb that Old Testament prophecy predicted (Zechariah
11:12 and Matthew 26:15).

Third, not a bone of Him was broken when he
was killed (John 19:36; Exodus 12:46; Numbers 9:12; Psalm 34:20). And fourth, He
was killed on the fourteenth of Nisan, between the evenings, just before the
beginning of the fifteenth day, at sundown (Exodus 12:6). If we take just
exactly what the Bible says, that Jesus was slain before the Passover Sabbath,
the type is marvelously fulfilled in every detail; but if we accept the
traditional theory that Jesus was crucified on Friday, the type fails at many
points.

Furthermore, if we accept the traditional view that Jesus was
crucified on Friday and ate the Passover on the regular day of Passover, then
the journey from Jericho to Bethany, which occurred six days before the Passover
(John 12:1), would fall on a Saturday- that is the Jewish Sabbath. Such a
journey on the Jewish Sabbath would be contrary to Jewish law.

Of
course, it was impossible for Jesus to take such a journey on the Jewish
Sabbath, because His triumphal entry into Jerusalem was on the Jewish Sabbath,
Saturday. This was altogether possible, for the Bible elsewhere tells us that
Bethany was a Sabbath’s day journey from Jerusalem (Acts 1:12 and Luke 24:50).

It has also been figured out by the astronomers that in the year A.D.
30, which is the commonly accepted year for the crucifixion of our Lord, the
Passover was observed on Thursday, April 6, the moon being full that day. The
chronologists who have supposed that the crucifixion took place on Friday have
been greatly perplexed by this fact that in the year A.D. 30 the Passover
occurred on Thursday.

One writer, in seeking a solution to the
difficulty, has suggested that the crucifixion may have been in the year A.D.
33. Although the full moon was on a Thursday that year also, the time was only
two and a half hours from being Friday. Consequently, he thinks that perhaps the
Jews may have observed the Passover on Friday, instead, and that the crucifixion
therefore took place on Thursday. However, when we accept exactly what the Bible
says- namely, that Jesus was not crucified on the Passover day but on “the
preparation for the Passover” (John 19:14) and that He was to be three days and
three nights in the grave- then the fact that the “preparation of the Passover”
that year was on a Wednesday and His resurrection early on the first day of the
week, allows exactly three days and three nights in the grave.

To sum it
all up, Jesus died just about sunset on Wednesday (April 5). Seventy-two hours
later, exactly three days and three nights, at the beginning of the first day of
the week, Saturday at sunset, He arose again from the grave. When the women
visited the tomb in the morning just before dawn, they found the grave already
empty.

From this, we are not driven to makeshift that any small portion
of a day is reckoned as a whole day and night, but we find the statement of
Jesus was literally true. Three days and three nights His body was dead and lay
in the sepulchre. While His body lay dead, He Himself, being quickened in the
Spirit (1 Peter 3:18), went into the heart of the earth and preached unto the
spirits that were in prison (1 Peter 3:19).

The two men on the way to
Emmaus early on the first day of the week, that is Sunday, said to Jesus, in
speaking of the crucifixion and events accompanying it, “Besides all this, to
day is the third day since these things were done” (Luke 24:21). Some people
have objected to this, and it is said that, if the crucifixion took place on
Wednesday, Sunday would be the fourth day since these things were done; but the
answer is very simple.

These things were done at sunset, just as
Thursday was beginning. They were therefore completed on Thursday, and the first
day since Thursday would be Friday, the second day since Thursday would be
Saturday, and “the third day since” Thursday would be Sunday, the first day of
the week. So the supposed objection in reality supports the theory. On the other
hand, if the crucifixion took place on Friday, by no manner of reckoning could
Sunday be made “the third day since” these things were done.

There are
many passages in the Scriptures that support the theory advanced above and that
make it necessary to believe that Jesus died late on Wednesday. Some of them are
as follows:

For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the whale’s
belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of
the earth. (Matthew 12:40)

This fellow said, I am able to destroy the
temple of God, and to build it in three days. (Matthew 26:61)

Thou that
destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, save Thyself. (Matthew
27:40)

Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive,
after three days I will rise again. (Matthew 27:63)

The Son of man must
suffer many things…and be killed, and after three days rise again. (Mark 8:31)

They shall kill him; and when he is killed, after three days he shall
rise again. (Mark 9:31 RV)

They…shall scourge him, and shall kill him;
and after three days he shall rise again. (Mark 10:34 RV)

Destroy this
temple that is made with hands, and in three days I will build another made
without hands. (Mark 14:58 RV)

Ah, thou that destroyest the temple, and
buildest it in three days, save thyself. (Mark 15:29-30)

Beside all
this, to day is the third day since these things were done. (Luke 24:21)

Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three
days I will raise it up. Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple
in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days? But he spake of the temple
of his body. When therefore he was risen from the dead, his disciples remembered
that he had said this unto them; and they believed the scripture, and the word
which Jesus had said. (John 2:19-22)

There is absolutely nothing in
favor of a Friday crucifixion, but everything in the Scripture is perfectly
harmonized by a Wednesday crucifixion. It is remarkable how many prophetical and
typical passages of the Old Testament are fulfilled and how many seeming
discrepancies in the gospel narratives are straightened out when we once come to
understand that Jesus died on Wednesday, and not on Friday.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Supper to Burial in less than 24 hours

In our modern way of reconing the days we go from morning to morning. This makes sense to us since it is convenient to sleep during the night hours and be awake during the daylight.

In the Jewish way of reconing the days, evening comes before morning, as patterned from the creation account in Genesis, with the day going from sunset to sunset. The day was divided into eight equal parts:

First Watch: Sunset to 9 PM
Second Watch: 9 PM to Midnight
Third Watch: Midnight to 3AM
Fourth Watch: 3 AM to 6AM
First Hour: 6 AM to 9 AM
Second Hour: 9 AM to Noon
Third Hour: Noon to 3 PM
Fourth Hour: 3 PM to Sunset

Back in the first century AD, if you lived in Palestine, in Israel, this system of evening and morning marking your day was nothing unusual.

The year is 30 AD, and it is early on Wednesday, Nisan 13 (meaning after sunset). Jesus and His disciples are in the upper room reclining at the table, eating their Passover meal. After supper, Jesus washes the feet of His disciples, which was a servant's task. Once Jesus is back at the table he announces that he will be betrayed by Judas Iscariot, who dipped his bread in the oil at the same time as Jesus.

Judas then leaves the room as Jesus begins to speak and to teach His disciples for the final time (or so it would seem, for the disciples still had no clue what was to happen later this day). When Jesus finishes, they all get up from the table to begin the pleasant walk up to the Garden of Gethsemane on the Mount of Olives.

Once in the garden, Jesus takes aside Peter, James and John and tells them to watch while He prays. They soon fall asleep. Jesus wakes them up then goes off again to pray. They fall asleep a second time when Jesus comes over to wake them up again. Then He goes off to pray a third time by Himself.

Judas Iscariot, Chief Priests and Elders come into the garden with a detachment of soldiers to arrest Jesus, who goes quietly with the mob. The disciples all leave quickly, though Peter and John stay close enough to follow. Jesus is taken before Annas and then Caiaphas the High Priest where a mock trial takes place. Here the religious leaders attempt to trump up some false charges against Jesus but cannot agree on what the charges are. Finally they decide on blasphemy, for during this charade Jesus has claimed to be the Son of God. During this time, Jesus prediction of Peter's three time denial of knowing Jesus has been fulfilled as the rooster crows.

Early in the morning, after a long night of arrest and false trials, Jesus is brought before the Roman governor, Pontius Pilate. Pilate is portrayed in the gospels as a weak man but I think he was anything but. Pilate sees in Jesus an innocent man by Roman standards but one that needs to be put down to appease the Jewish leaders.

Jesus is flogged for the benefit of the Jewish leaders, Pilate hoping this will appease them so he can let Jesus go. The crowd that welcomed Jesus a few days ago now calls (after prompting I'm sure) for Jesus to be crucified. Barrabbas, a notoruis insurrectionist and murderer is set free by Pilate and Jesus is taken out to be scourged, beaten and finally led out to be "numbered amongst the transgressors."

Golgotha, or place of the skull, is remarkably similar now to how it looked then, There is a grassy area now on top of the hill where the three crosses would have been hung, in plain sight of everyone for miles around. Jesus was in the middle of the two thieves and had a sign written in Latin, Greek and Hebrew "KING OF THE JEWS" and fastened above His head.

Mark 15:25 says it was the third hour (approximately 9 AM) when the crucifixion took place. For the first three hours Jesus hung on the cross there was regular daylight. Scripture tells us that for the next three hours (noon-3pm) darkness overtook the land. At the ninth hour (3PM) Jesus gave up His spirit and the veil in the Temple was torn in half.

The Jewish religious leaders asaked that the bodies be taken down before sunset, when Passover would begin. So to hasten death they broke the legs of the two thieves on either side of Jesus. Seeing that He was already dead, the soldiers did not break any of Jesus bones but instead stuck a spear into His side, and blood and water came out.

Joseph of Arimathea went to Pilate and asked for Jesus body. Once the soldiers verified to Pilate that Jesus was dead, he let Jesus be taken down from the cross. Joseph was a rich man and had a new tomb cut into a cave nearby where there was (and still is) a garden. He and Nicodemus wrapped Jesus body in linen and oils per the burial customs of the day and laid the body on a stone slab inside the tomb. Then a large stone was rolled in front of the entranceway to the tomb.

The Jewish leaders asaked Pilate to have a guard posted there and the tomb was sealed with a signet, probably the official seal of Rome, so that opening the tomb would be a crime.

As Jesus crucifixion was a public event, I'm sure the tomb which held His body was equally public. How many tombs were as heavily guarded as this one? Probably none. Certainly all of official Rome in Jerusalem knew where it was and the Jewsish leaders did too.

I was going to include relevant scripture throughout the post but that would have made the post way, way too long. I invite you to read the four accounts of these events in Matthew 26-27, Mark 14-15, Luke 22-23 and John 13-19.

Monday, April 10, 2006

This is really cool

I absolutely love it when I learn new things. Or precisely when I read something and realize I hadn't noticed that before. Let me elaborate, while I attempt to pull this all together for you, so please bear with me.

I just finished reading Warren Wiersbe's Be Basic, which is a study in Genesis 1-11. Wiersbe makes a connection in the end notes for chapter nine that I had not realized before. One that connects the capital event of Passion Week with these first chapters of Genesis.

Let's attempt to build a bridge, shall we?

Good.


1And God remembered Noah, and every living thing, and all the cattle that was with him in the ark: and God made a wind to pass over the earth, and the waters assuaged;
2The fountains also of the deep and the windows of heaven were stopped, and the rain from heaven was restrained;
3And the waters returned from off the earth continually: and after the end of the hundred and fifty days the waters were abated.
4And the ark rested in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, upon the mountains of Ararat.
5And the waters decreased continually until the tenth month: in the tenth month, on the first day of the month, were the tops of the mountains seen.
-Genesis 8:1-5 (King James Version)



18For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:
19By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison;
20Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.
21The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:
22Who is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him.
- 1 Peter 3:18-22 (King James Version)


--

Okay, now you are justifiably wondering what these two passages in Scripture have to do with each other? What is the connection here?

I'm so glad you asked.

Since the time of the Exodus, Israel has operated with two calendars. The civil calendar began in the seventh month (Tishri) which is mid-September to mid-October on our calendar. The religious calendar began with Passover on Nisan 14 (mid-March to mid-April on our calendar). While Nisan is the first month of the Jewish religious year, it is the seventh month on the civil calendar. The seventh month in later years became very important for Israel because they celebrated the Feast of Trumpets, the Day of Atonement and the Feast of Tabernacles.

Now here's the bridge: Jesus died on the cross on Nisan 14 and rose from the dead three days later, which would be Nisan 17, our Easter. What does the Genesis text say? That the ark came to rest on Ararat on the seventeenth day of the seventh month. So then, on what date did Jesus resurrection occur? On the seventeenth day of the seventh month!

Coincidence? I think not.

Do I fully understand the significance of this connection? Do you? I certainly don't, at least not at the moment. But I do know that this is just another confirmation that by taking the time to read and understand the Word of God and taking it at face value, Scripture comes together in such a marvelous way.

Wasn't that cool?