Catholics and Lisa Miller Refuted: Evidence of Pre-Christian Jews
Post link: http://prechristians.tk
Ian Punnett had on a heretic as a guest this morning on Coast to Coast A.M., and it was the senior editor of the liberal news magazine called Newsweek: Lisa Miller, whose book “on Heaven” he helped peddle. She claimed on C2C and in her book, that no Jew before Daniel spoke about Heaven as a place you go to for being righteous (which is nonsensical since Daniel didn’t teach that) and that therefore no Jews had any expectation to go there (which is also nonsensical since not finding evidence that someone said something before someone else, is not evidence that they didn’t or didn’t think such a thing), She also taught that no Jew thought of heaven as anything other than the sky, except that God and angels lived there. She also implied or said in various ways, that no Jews were Christians till Christ was born. She probably believes in her simpleton mind because “Jesus” isn’t said anywhere in the Old Testament (as if God can’t refer to someone without using their name, and yet “Jesus” is in the Old Testament, it’s spelled “Joshua”, which in Hebrew is pronounced, “Yeshua”. Sound familiar?).
Lisa’s false teachings are contradicted by the Bible:
The 1st evidence:
In Genesis 1, God lives neither in “the sky” or earth, as neither had existed until he made them, and Genesis 1 says that God’s Spirit, “hovered” over the waters he made.
From that chapter people would have gotten the impression that God already had a dwelling place and that he “hovered” above Earth, rather than walking on it.
The 2nd evidence:
Also in Genesis 1, going on to 2, God’s word says, “God called the expanse ‘heaven.’ And there was evening, and there was morning—the second day. … And God said, ‘Let there be lights in the expanse of the heaven to separate the day from the night, and let them serve as signs to mark seasons and days and years, and let them be lights in the expanse of the heaven to give light on the earth. Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them.” – Genesis 1-2
The 3rd evidence:
Only four chapters later, in the days of Noah, it says,
“And God saw the earth, and behold, it was corrupt, for all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth.” – Genesis 6:12
The 4th evidence:
In the next chapter the concept that God saves those who are righteous is taught:
“Yahweh then said to Noah, ‘Go into the ark, you and your whole family, because I have found you righteous in this generation.'” – Genesis 7:1
To some, that verse would have made them think that God was looking down upon the Earth from some place above. In Genesis 1 God spoke to Adam and Eve and in Genesis 6 God spoke to Noah, and they indicate that none of these three saw God when he spoke to them (and if they did surely the Bible would have mentioned such great and exceptional events). Some people who read those parts of the Bible might have concluded that God surely had some visible appearance (and so believed that he must have been speaking from some place higher than even the stars. But Genesis also indicated that God was near to the location of Adam and Eve and Noah, and to some this might have indicated that God was invisible or some may have thought that figuratively speaking he was focusing his attention on them, and was therefore near them in that sense (it is only much later in the Bible that it indicates God is in all places spiritually, though secretly God may have let people know before that, that that was so.)
The 5th evidence:
Six chapters later however, it is made more evident that there is a definite place other than the sky, the area where the stars are and Earth:
“Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. He was priest of God Most High, and he blessed Abram, saying, ‘Blessed be Abram by God Most High, Creator of Heaven and earth.” – Genesis 14:18-19
Notice that Melchizedek did not say, “heavens”, plural, which would have included the “sky” and the area where stars were, which today we call “space”. Instead, he said, “Heaven”, singular, referring to something other than the obvious two that everyone can see.
The 6th evidence:
Though God is all powerful (he created the universe and all the life in it) and able to see anywhere as the Bible seemed to indicate in the previous five chapters all the way up to Genesis 6:12, where God speaks to Noah, but is apparently invisible to him, and the Jews reading up to that point would have gotten the impression that God was invisible. But later in Exodus, God showed himself in various ways to the Jews living while Moses was alive, repeatedly, and this would have given some, at that time, the impression that God could be seen, but had been hiding himself:
From the events in Exodus, the Jews and those by and among them might have gotten the impression that God was a being that was easily seen and therefore if he had been in the sky the whole time, they would have known it (and there would surely be records of such a sight recorded all over the world as it would be something unusual):
“God led the people around by the way of the wilderness toward the Red Sea. And the people of Israel went up out of the land of Egypt equipped for battle. Moses took the bones of Joseph with him, for Joseph had made the sons of Israel solemnly swear, saying, “God will surely visit you, and you shall carry up my bones with you from here.” And they moved on from Succoth and encamped at Etham, on the edge of the wilderness. And Yahweh went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead them along the way, and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, that they might travel by day and by night. The pillar of cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night did not depart from before the people. – Exodus 13:18-22
“And Moses brought forth the people out of the camp to meet with God; and they stood at the nether part of the mount. And mount Sinai was altogether on a smoke, because Yahweh descended upon it in fire: and the smoke thereof ascended as the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mount quaked greatly.” – Exodus 19:17-18
“Then the cloud covered the tent of meeting, and the glory of Yahweh filled the tabernacle. And Moses was not able to enter the tent of meeting because the cloud settled on it, and the glory of Yahweh filled the tabernacle. Throughout all their journeys, whenever the cloud was taken up from over the tabernacle, the people of Israel would set out. But if the cloud was not taken up, then they did not set out till the day that it was taken up. For the cloud of Yahweh was on the tabernacle by day, and fire was in it by night, in the sight of all the house of Israel throughout all their journeys.” – Exodus 40:34-38
The 7th and 8th evidences:
There are also two strong evidences that the gospel (the “good news” (of salvation from Hell and man being able to have eternal peace though Jesus) was known, just as the Jesus taught and others in the New Testament did, to Adam and others early on. Even Cain knew from what this verse implies, in which Cain said:
“Behold, you have driven me today away from the ground, and from your face I shall be hidden.” – Genesis 4:14. Genesis 4 does not indicate that Cain, an evil man, was allowed to literally see God’s face. So then what did he mean? Some would say (as I know from experience) that it was just a metaphor in which Cain meant God would no longer look at him, but look away from him in shame, and not be kind to him any longer. Cain might have meant that, but at the same time was also indicating that he knew that those who obtained eternal life/peace, would one day see God’s face. Evidence for this is in how Cain made his sentence, he did not say, “You have hidden,” as in “You were showing me kindness and now have withdrawn it” or literally that he saw God’s face or that God was looking at Cain, but then was looking away continually in disgust (over Cain murdering Abel), but said that God in the future would do so. That those with eternal peace (which the Bible in various places teaches only the righteous/those who love God and obey him much) will see God’s face one day, isn’t speculation, but is taught in Psalm 17:15:
“As for me, I shall behold your face in righteousness; when I awake, I shall be satisfied with your likeness.”
Jesus also said, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” – Matthew 5:8
The next strong evidence that the gospel was known to some very early on, came just 12 verses later, in the same chapter:
“To Seth also, a son was born, and he called his name ‘Enosh’. At that time people began to call upon the name of Yahweh.”
First, “Enosh” means, “Man: frail and miserable”, and whose name also seems to hint at man’s mortality, being that just a few verses before, the subject was on Cain murdering Abel, and Cain’s misery from God’s condemnation upon him and the future punishment that he would endure afterwards. So, when the next sentence says, “At that time people began to call upon the name of Yahweh.”, it implies that the people of this time were doing so, after seeing and hearing about man being truly mortal (knowing that Abel died) and could suffer great misery from doing wrong (as they learned from what happened to Adam, Eve, and Cain and from their own experience when being injured and emotionally hurt from mistreatment from other people and evil angels, as they lived their lives). In other words, man, upon realizing he was mortal, weak (in comparison to God) and while feeling torment, began to call out to God for relief, for help. The second sentence in Genesis 4:26 is similar to this passage in the New Testament, which is referring to how to obtain eternal peace:
“For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” – Romans 10:12-13
And note that the first people, those born while Adam and Eve were still alive, were neither Jews nor Greeks, but were their ancestors.
The 9th evidence:
It is further evidence that the gospel was known before the even the Jews existed (or Greeks):
“It came to pass that hypocrites began to multiply on the face of the land and daughters were born to them, and the sons of God saw that the daughters of the hypocrites were attractive, and they took as wives whichever of them that they chose to have. Then Yahweh said, “My Spirit shall not abide in man forever, for he is flesh: his days shall be 120 years.” – Genesis 6:1-3
The typical translation of this passage makes it seem like “the sons of God” are angels and that God just decided to let them have sex with humans, because they felt like it, but there is no indication, using my translation, that the perfectly obedient angels just decided to marry humans one day (and I say “perfect” because God implies that the evil angels “left their place” (in other words, basically, disobeyed God) and is why he considered them evil and rejected them, and because he did not reject the other angels and still hasn’t they must not disobey God/are perfectly obedient to him). Rather, as my possible translation shows, those who were saved, “the sons of God” (which John 1:12 indicates is another name for those who are saved), sinned by taking the unsaved (hypocrites) as wives. And I say “sinned”, because in the New Testament, God commands the saved to not marry the unsaved, because they are not compatible morally and will not get along, but also because right after the sons of God are said to marry these hypocrites or “daughters of men” if you insist, God expresses his anger, saying that he’s decided to limit the lifespans of the man to 120 years (yes I know there are people who have lived longer after this decree was made, so he was probably referring to the people alive at that time, or making a general decree that would be true for most, but not all (as is evident from verse 7 in which God clearly made a generalized statement about killing off all man, but then excepts Noah and his family) and other verses expressing God’s disapproval and anger at man in the next verses from 4-7 and 11-13.
The 10th evidence:
Genesis 22:1-22 is an obvious allegory (for us who can look back on it from after the Bible was finished) in which a story is given that is similar to Christ’s sacrificial offering of himself, in which God has Abraham role play, without realizing it, the story of God offering Christ as a sacrificial offering. Abraham said that God would provide a lamb for a sacrifice. In the New Testament, Jesus, whom John the Baptist called, “the lamb of God”, volunteered himself to be sacrificed by God (which God did through evil men).
The 11th evidence:
In Genesis 37:35 it says,
“All his sons and all his daughters rose up to comfort [Jacob], but he refused to be comforted and said, ‘No, I shall go down to Sheol to my son, mourning.'”
Jacob indicated that he believe he would still be alive after he died, and would go to a place where he would be in torment (though that surely didn’t happen to Jacob according to Jesus). This obviously shows that some Jews believed that they would still be alive after they died. Of course not all would believe they would end up in Sheol/Hell, and if they believed that Hell was downward, then they would have believed, logically, that a place of peace was upwards, above, in Heaven (of course the sides would be earth, and the Bible doesn’t teach that Jews believed you would go on living by continuing to live as a spirit on Earth).
The 12th evidence: is this passage:
I wait for your salvation, Yahweh. … Joseph is a fruitful bough, a fruitful bough by a spring; his branches run over the wall. The archers bitterly attacked him, shot at him, and harassed him severely, yet his bow remained unmoved; his arms were made agile by the hands of the Mighty One of Jacob (from there is the Shepherd, the Stone of Israel), by the God of your father who will help you, by the Almighty who will bless you with blessings of heaven above… Genesis 49:18, 22-25.
The 13th evidence: is this passage:
“Moses returned to Yahweh and said, ‘Alas: this people has sinned a great sin. They have made for themselves gods of gold, but now, if you will forgive their sin–but if not, please blot me out of your book that you have written. But Yahweh said to Moses, ‘Whoever has sinned against me, I will blot out of my book.'” – Exodus 32:31-33
To what book was Moses referring? It wasn’t Exodus, which wasn’t even finished yet. There is also no logical reason as to why Moses would ask to have reference to him in Exodus removed as opposed to simply asking God, “Don’t use me any further, don’t mention me anymore in Exodus, choose someone else”. Again: Why would Moses ask to have history about him erased rather than asking God to simply choose another to continue serving in his place? It makes better sense if Moses was referring to another book which the New Testament mentions, and if Moses was referring to sacrificing himself (and was asking in an indirect way). Philippians 4:3 says,
“Yes, I ask you also, true companion, help these women, who have labored side by side with me in the gospel together with Clement and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the book of life.”
Here are verses in Revelation that indicate the Book of Life also has to do with death:
“The one who conquers will be clothed thus in white garments, and I will never blot his name out of the book of life.” – Revelation 3:5;
“And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. … And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire. – Revelation 20:12, 15
And Exodus also says that God spoke with Moses “face to face” like a friend, so surely of all the people to know these things, was Moses. So Moses was asking God to do this, “Remove my name from the Book of Life and punish me in Hell in the place of those who have sinned so that they may have eternal peace and be able to go to Heaven.” when he had asked God to remove/”blot out” his name from the Book of Life and to instead spare those Jews who sinned against God.
The 14th evidence: that the concept of a spiritual Heaven and Hell was at least known to the Jews right away, though wasn’t a sure thing for most of them at the time Solomon had lived (ironically, since God said he was the wisest man (in the flesh) who would ever live (besides Jesus), is this verse:
“Who knows whether the spirit of man goes upward and the spirit of the beast goes down into the earth?” – Ecclesiastes 3:21
So, at least in Solomon’s time, there would have been speculation about whether or not Heaven and Hell had physical locations or spiritual ones (spiritual, as in, in some unseen locations figuratively referred to as Heaven/above or Hell/below).
The 15th evidence:
Besides the evidence I have so far given, there is also no evidence that Daniel just made up the concept that by being righteous you could get to Heaven one day, if he did, then why didn’t Lisa say what it was? She had three hours to do so, instead, she babbled and laughed along with Ian’s stupid jokes and replies. Also, Daniel didn’t even teach that you could get to Heaven by being righteous, so she twisted the Bible and in a dangerous way, which misleads people thinking that they could get to Heaven by trying to be good in and of themselves, as Arminians teach.
Lisa also said that she (simply) believes whoever claims they saw Heaven as truly having seen it. Can anyone say, “gullible” and “assuming”?
The 16th evidence:
A caller also pointed out part of this passage in Job, which is an ancient book, which is about Job (a man who some Christians believe lived and died before Moses was born):
For God speaks in one way, and in two, though man does not perceive it. In a dream, in a vision of the night, when deep sleep falls on men, while they slumber on their beds, then he opens the ears of men and terrifies them with warnings, that he may turn man aside from his deed and conceal pride from a man; he keeps back his soul from the pit, his life from perishing by the sword. Man is also rebuked with pain on his bed and with continual strife in his bones, so that his life loathes bread, and his appetite the choicest food. His flesh is so wasted away that it cannot be seen, and his bones that were not seen stick out. His soul draws near the pit, and his life to those who bring death. If there be for him an angel, a mediator, one of the thousand, to declare to man what is right for him, and he is merciful to him, and says, ‘Deliver him from going down into the pit; I have found a ransom; let his flesh become fresh with youth; let him return to the days of his youthful vigor’; then man prays to God, and he accepts him; he sees his face with a shout of joy, and he restores to man his righteousness. – Job 33:14-26
Clearly, Lisa is wrong, and in my opinion, didn’t want to have wasted her time on having written a large book for nothing, and wanted to get some return on her efforts, even if she knew it was undeserved. I don’t believe that someone as intelligent as her was unaware that the New Testament taught that certain people in the Old Testament, for example the prophets, knew about Christ and trusted in him as their future savior from Hell, and that the Old Testament contained metaphors of events that would happen which the New Testament also describes or recorded as having been fulfilled (like Christ’s sacrifice). Further, I believe she knew about Calvinism and Arminianism. I believe this in part, not just because of her age and position in life (someone who reads much news, and would have to come across religious topics on Christian fundamentalism), but also because when she looked up something like, “origin of being righteous to enter heaven” or “origin of the teaching that good deeds must be done to get to Heaven” would have seen these two sites in the search results:
Why A Moral Life Won’t Get Us to Heaven
If she searched for, “Judaism, doctrine, righteousness, heaven”, would have seen:
Olam Ha-Ba: The Afterlife which mentions an evidence I hadn’t thought of, that of the Patriarchs being “gathered to their people” after they died.
Jesus also pointed out that God said he was the God of the Patriarchs who had died, indicating that they were still alive, being that God is not the God of (ruling over) the dead.