Sunday, January 29, 2012

Who was Josephus?

Josephus was born Joseph ben Mattathias in 37 C.E. in Jerusalem of a priestly and royal family. He excelled in his studies of Jewish law and studied with the Sadducees, Pharisees, and the Essenes, eventually aligning himself with the Pharisees. In 62 C.E. he went to Rome to free some imprisoned priests. After accomplishing this mission through the intercession of Nero’s wife, Poppaea, he returned to Jerusalem in 65 C.E. to find the country in revolt against Rome.
Although Josephus had deep misgivings about the revolt, it became inevitable, due to reasons he discusses in his history, primarily the abuses of the Romans; this spurred the growth of fanatical Messianic Jewish movements which believed that the world was coming to an end shortly. In 66 C.E. the Masada was seized by the Zealots and the Romans were on the march; Josephus was appointed the commander of Galilee.
Josephus had to fight a defensive war against overwhelming force while refereeing internecine squabbles in the Jewish ranks. In 67 C.E. Josephus and other rebels were cornered in a cave during the siege of Jotapata and took a suicide pact. However, Josephus survived, and was taken hostage by the Romans, led by Vespasian.
Josephus shrewdly reinterpreted the Messianic prophecies. He predicted that Vespasian would become the ruler of the ‘entire world’. Josephus joined the Romans, for which he was branded a traitor. He acted as consultant to the Romans and a go-between with the revolutionaries. Unable to convince the rebels to surrender, Josephus ended up watching the second destruction of the Temple and the defeat of the Jewish nation.
His prophecy became true in 68 C.E. when Nero committed suicide and Vespasian became Ceasar. As a result, Josephus was freed; he moved to Roman and became a Roman citizen, taking the Vespasian family name Flavius. Vespasian commissioned Josephus to write a history of the war, which he finished in 78 C.E., the Jewish War.
Despite his ambivalent role, Josephus was an eyewitness to history, and his writings are considered authoritative. These texts are key to understanding a pivotal point in world history, which has tragic repercussions even to this day.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Amanda Blair (Zombeck)



JJ Blair (Vulhop)









This has to be the biggest most vibrant rainbow I have ever seen in all my many years.
It made a complete arc, not just a section visible.. and some saw double rainbows.

Our January snowfall.. big one :) was about 6" and didn't last long

Instead of cranking up the furnace in the cold, I make bread!
Here's my very first try at French bread.  Yesterday I made
4 loaves of rye bread.. now I'm out of rye flour.. will search for that again.

Monday, January 23, 2012

January 23

Today would have been my Dad's 97th birthday.. he died 35 years ago this February. 

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Am reading "Calvin's Institutes".. wow.  Never thought I'd manage this book.  I joined a group on Facebook with a few friends to read this slowly and be able to appreciate what Calvin had to say.  I've read 6 chapters so far, but am going back to chapters 1-3 for the FB meeting on the 28th where we can discuss what we read.  This is the 3rd time I've attempted the Institutes- but so far, I believe I'm understanding better and reading a bit slower to absorb it all.  Amazing insights that Calvin had.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

I got up this morning to about 5-6" of new snow.. it was more than beautiful.  I decided to just take it easy today and do a few  chores rather than try to do a lot.. so...
I baked French bread- 3  loaves came out perfect.  I took photos, but will post later.  This past week I've tried whole wheat and rye bread.  I am so used to our oatmeal  bread that I forget there are other kinds of bread out there.  So it's been a week of firsts.
Hoping to be at worship tomorrow.  John plowed out our driveway and I cleaned off the KIA.. Now, we just need good weather in the morning....
Looks like a chance of rain on Sabbath... hmmmm
Lunch was fun.  Wendell asked for an everything omelet.. so I filled a skillet with eggs and proceeded to load on as many veggies as I could.. then cheese and some hard salami cut in teensy weensy bits... that's 6 different cheeses ...  and tomatoes, onion, mushrooms.. it was huge- take my word for it.  I cut it in half for the 2 of us and ended up tossing a bit of mine- It was just tooooooooo  much.  I sliced up the end of the one loaf of whole wheat and , well... we were full to capacity.
Tonight we shall have home made chicken veggie soup again, but this time with the french bread on the side... oh.. yummy!
Thomas is doing well with all the wintery weather.  Not many cats have a 2 bedroom apartment to keep them cozy and protected from the cold.  Half is insulated and the other has a cozy little plush cushion with sides thanks to Carlow and Cricket.  We take him fresh warm water every couple of hours and then take his food out for 15 min or so that he can eat without other animals disturbing him. 

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Yesterday was like a marathon.  Steady running for hours at a time.  The good thing is that it was payday and Wendell and I went out for breakfast, to the Farmer's Market, stopped for ice cream at King Cones, Sam's Club, Dollar General.. and that's when he got sick and I had to take him home before finishing.  That was okay- the car was overloaded at that point and all that was left was the supermarket and refueling.  Hubby was sick the rest of the day and ate very sparingly.  He's fine now- back to normal. 
I'd unloaded all the stuff we bought before and then I took off to refuel and do the supermarket.   We now have enough supplies to last us another week or two- fresh veggies, fruits.
So we are to be blessed with snow again.  The prognosticators say 1-3"... that always makes me laugh- why not up to 3"  .. 50% of the time they are right..
I do appreciate knowing when a storm is coming through however.

Today I made rye bread and a meatloaf.  The rye is good.  I gave Charlie a loaf and he gave me 3 dozen eggs in return.  You gotta love barter.  Tuesday I'd made whole wheat bread- quite good.  Chicken is in the oven and will be done in 20 min or so.

I'm working on DVDs for our families.  Right now I have the first one done- called : Simply the Best- Older generations.  It's a  compilation of as many photos of my mother's generation and ancestors before her set to music.  It came out okay, but on this next one called "Simply the Best Cousins", I'm getting much more creative. 

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Whatever it was I had before, it left.. and today I am again symptomatic.. sneezing sneezing sneezing!!!  Feel a bit on the drippy side.  Not sure how all this came about..
Today I need to clear all the snow off the car, warm it up, and then go for gas so we can get to church on Sabbath. 
Chicken soup needed here.. I better get the bones out of the freezer and make a round of it for lunch tomorrow. 

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Feeling a bit under the weather today.. ugh.  Nothing specific, but achy more than normal and chilly when I should be toasty and overly warm when I should be just right..   You know that funny feeling when you have a virus and your skin feels all crawly?  Yeah.. I have that too.  Hmmm  Tomorrow is another day...

Friday, January 06, 2012

It's January 6th, the temperature reached 54* today.  Love this global warming thing.. it's the best!
Had to buy a new dryer.. was thankful for my pension check that arrived the day I had to get the new one.  The old dryer had been a little extra noisy, but when it began screeching and then smelled strange, I quit.  I hung 2 loads of clothes on hangers in the guest bath and sat down to the computer and ordered a new dryer from Sears.  That was on the 2nd.. I was drying clothes in it on the 4th by noon.  WOW!   The old dryer is on the back deck waiting for Paul to haul away for scrap. 
Enjoying reading.. already have read 2 books this year and it's only the 6th of January :)
I have just finished the series Understanding the Work of Christ teaching series with RC Sproul.  It was well worth the time.  I highly recommend it to everyone.  He speaks in terms everyone would understand and even to people like me. 
His series is 11-12 videos that you can access from the above link.  He talks about the incarnation, baptism, temptation, triumpful entry, the Last Supper, resurrection and ascension as well as His return.
There are other topics, but these are the few I'm reminded of at this moment.

Monday, January 02, 2012

I love my Nook.  I've read 3 books already this past week.. and several of them have truly touched my heart.   At the moment I am reading "The Christian Leaders of England in the Eighteenth Century" by JC Ryle.. one of my favorite authors.

Read some of his words here:
"From the year 1700 till about the era of the French Revolution, England seemed barren of all that is really good.  How such a state of things can have arisen in a land of free Bibles and professing Protestantism is almost past comprehension.  Christianity seemed to lie as one dead, insomuch that you might have said 'she is dead.'  Moralityy, however much exalted in pulpits, was thoroughly trampled under foot in the streets.  There was darkness in high places and darkness in low places- darkness in the court, the camp, the Parliament, and the bar- darkness in country, and darkness in town- darkness among rich and darkness among poor- a gross , thick, religious and moral darkness- a darkness that might be felt."
"The blight of ease and  freedom from persecution seemed to rest upon the Dissenters.  Natural theology, without a single distinctive doctrine of Christianity, cold morality, or barren orthodoxy, formed the staple teaching both in church and chapel.  Sermons everywhere were little better than miserable moral essays, utterly devoid of anything likely to awaken, convert, or save souls."
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It was what I'd have called a Blustery day on Jan 1, 2012. It had been a beautiful day.. the winds picked up to more than gale force later in the evening blowing everything everywhere. Hoping our trash can got emptied by the trash people and not the wind.
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Annabelle and cousin Jeffrey
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